Day 349-50: All Aboard The Good Ship Simacom!

15.12.09-16.12.09:

Yesterday I and 43 other passengers boarded the ‘Simacom’ bound for Dar es Saleem, three weeks to the day since I arrived in Comoros.

It was supposed to have left two weeks ago, then last Saturday, then yesterday. It’s now Tuesday we’re still in port. Time is not money. Time is not money. I’m here with a lovely French couple, Thomas and Sevine, who arrived in Comoros on Sunday. They live in Reunion and they’re trying to get back to France without flying. They spent the last three weeks waiting to leave Mahajanga on a boat – nice to know I’m not the only one!

But, given the choice, I would have preferred to be stuck in Madagascar for three weeks than here. But watchagonnado? The delay today is being caused by some passengers having outstayed their 45 day visa for Comoros (possibly because they’ve been waiting that long for a frickin’ boat…) but we should be out of here today, at some point.

Later that day…

We eventually left port at about noon and I waved my fond farewells to Comoros. I made a lot of good friends there and I’m sorry to see them gone. But Comoros itself… meh. So we’re now on the MV Simacom heading northwest to Dar es Salaam where I left a whopping two months ago. I’m trying not to think about it – I may burst into tears…!

The sea is quite rough today and Thomas and Sevine aren’t liking the mal del mer. I’m just about holding my own. Maybe, heaven forfend, I might be getting used to it. Although grotty as hell and full of scrap metal junk that we had to clamber over to get on board, the Simacom is head, shoulders, knees and toes above the damn Shissiwani (I’m SO glad I did not have to take that nightmare back). We all got wooden benches to sit (and sleep) on and there’s even a telly! They’re currently treating us to a Bond Marathon working backwards from Casino Royale. We’re currently up to Goldeneye. God it makes me want to play the game on Nick’s N64. That stuff was like crack.

Incidentally, I know this has nothing to do with anything but HEY YOU Holocaust/Evolution/Climate Change/Moon Landings/AIDS deniers… Yeah, you… You know what? YEEEEEER RIGHT and EVERYBODY CLEVERER THAN YOU IS WRONG.

Yes.

The Next Day…

By the time I woke up this morning we were up to Octopussy. Ahh… Udaipur. Although I have to point out that one of the baddies has a killer yo-yo. A killer yo-yo? WTF??

The sea today was smooth as silk and with the wind behind us we made good time – we should hit Dar early tomorrow morning. I wasted today watching Mission Impossible III (meh), Angels and Demons (meh) and Wolverine (meh) on my laptop while stuffing my face full of Thomas and Sevine’s lychees while they sat and read. The only annoyance was this snaggletoothed Indian chap who insisted on tapping me on the shoulder every now and again and speaking in a whisper, forcing me pop my headphones out of my ears and to crane closer at which point he would unleash the full force of his killer halitosis. Urgh.

I can’t WAIT to be back in Africa.

Graham Hughes

Graham Hughes is a British adventurer, presenter, filmmaker and author. He is the only person to have travelled to every country in the world without flying. From 2014 to 2017 he lived off-grid on a private island that he won in a game show, before returning to the UK to campaign for a better future for the generations to come.

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