Niger Travel Stories

Preparing to Leave Ivory Coast

Preparing to Leave Ivory Coast
Abidjan Cote Divoire West Africa
Tuesday, October 31, 2006

I am leaving today with Emirates Airlines October 31, 2006 Tuesday around 4:00 PM and will arrive in Bangkok, Thailand on about November 1, 2006 at 4:00 in the afternoon or something like that.

I have been trying to stay busy, and keep my brain happy. I ate a 10 Dollars Pizza last night here in the African Dream Restaurant and Hotel in Grand Bassam, Ivory Coast.

A hamburger and French Fries cost 7 US Dollars, to say the least, Ivory Coast is not cheap, and it is outrageously expensive.

I have been working on putting up all the airports in the world on my site Flyinghobos.com.

http://www.flyinghobos.com

We are doing database sites, with a thing called mod-rewrite, it is all PHP stuff and extremely complicated. Andrew boy genius of India is my right hand man and techie and take a very complicated thought on my part and help transliterate it into a feasible database in sol or PHP, all according to how you think of things.

We have about 20 some databases doing various things.

I came up with a system where I can make a database and enter all the code, html, and formatting, comments, today, I am sending the first database to Andrew to see if it works… heehawed

Two steps forward and one-step back, I know there are problems, but what is a person to do, this is what I like to do solve problems.

Inventions or Innovations

I am constantly trying to invent or combine ideas to create a better situation, strange, but I feel the most alive when I am creating a real life something. Writing in the blog is more of a thinking life through process and not creative, however always enlightening.

One invention or idea…

I have a camera bag, it has three zippers on it, and one or two of the pouches is a problem. I carry these rechargeable batteries in one some pouch on the sleeve or strap of the camera bag. If I grab some batteries, then forget to zip it shut, the batteries inside can come flying out, it happened one day and a car ran over two batteries. These are not cheap batteries and hard to buy overseas at any reasonable price.

They wanted 32 US dollars for two here in Abidjan, I did not buy. I carry eight at all time, and will soon go to 12 or 16.

I figure out a way to connect nylon cord to the zippers, when I stretch the bag, the straps pull the zippers shut, it is annoyingly in the way and only comfortable when I pull the zippers shut. I have safety pinned it to the bag, and will get it under a sewing machine soon or sew myself.

It is something in my brain I call redundancy, a backup system to keep me from forgetting.

Well, in a way Flyinghobos.com is the culmination of many moons of thinking and deliberation. I hope I can see the result of my database work soon, however, as normal I have to wait for Andrew to try to even come close to keeping up with all my projects.

It is fun, and hopefully profitable, I am putting up in one broad swoop over 14, 748 pages, and that is many pages. It is all a mathematical feasible study, in combinations and permutations. Made to provide good information on Airports, and to be profitable.

I will hopefully approach soon all the airlines of the planet, with a special focus on the LCC or low cost carriers, which are not told to you by the travel agencies.


Preparing to Leave Ivory Coast


2006 Oct 31 I Leave Ivory Coast


2006 Oct 31 I Leave Ivory Coast
 
I willl fly with Emriates Airlines to Bangkok Thaialand on October 31, Tuesday, I should arrive on the first of Novermber in the evening.
 
Thanks
 
2006 Oct 31 I Leave Ivory Coast


Thanks

Andy of HoboTraveler.com
Daily Diary or Travel Journal
http://www.hobotraveler.com/blogger.html


Last Push and Out of Africa


Last Push and Out of Africa
 
I am have finally published many many post to blogger.com. The system is not working good, so I am sending this one to push them on through. If I post by email, it make all the post puslish or at least I hope.
 
There are hundreds of post that was not sent by Yahoogroups, or Googlegroups, so readers really do need to go to the site to read.
 
Thanks
Andy in Abidjan, Ivory Coast
 
Last Push and Out of Africa
 


Thanks

Andy of HoboTraveler.com
Daily Diary or Travel Journal
http://www.hobotraveler.com/blogger.html


Questioning My Sanity

Questioning My Sanity
Abidjan Cote d’Ivoire West Africa
Sunday, October 29, 2006

I am spending too much time alone; I am starting to lose the plot. I can feel myself not understanding what is today or tomorrow. It is I am watching a movie; I go out, buy, walk around and try to keep in touch, and however there is a real distance between my brain and my normal sense of reality. Talking French is like a noise, it is weird. I need to have some conversations in English with some persons who are real. The Hotel I am in, the Africa Dream is nice, however, it is French, there are some children, a wife, a husband, he is always gone to some restaurant, he speaks English, however still a little surreal.

I think and this is strange, the answer it to walk, to look, to say hello to people, there is a problem though. I just do not feel connected to the place anymore. The lady in the internet café asked me if I was OK, if I felt ok. She sees me every day, I say, Qui, but this is French, what can I say…

She is nice, the internet café is my only sense of companionship, I can go have a lackadaisical relation with some girl here, but even though I would be talking with a 25-year-old Cote d’Ivoire girl, it would still be an ever-present fourth grade conversation. I need a challenge to the brain, like a conversation on why Bush is good or Bad, I really do not want that conversation, but this is an example.

I cannot remember the last time I talked with a person in English, it was Sophi, maybe in Natitingou, Benin, and she is still on the fourth grade level of world understanding.

I suppose it would help to watch TV, I have not seen CNN or BBC the two big storytellers since the Galion Hotel in Lome, Togo.

Africa is bleak in this way, people come here to live, but they do not travel. I guess Ghana is a good choice, in Ghana I did meet people, sort of out on the edge volunteers, but they were good spirited, they just were a little glassy eyed to listen to too much.

I will be glad to fly to Thailand; there is always a person who speaks English in easy reach of a conversation. Strange, I do not need friendship as just a person to talk with, to know there are real people. The priorities of Africa are out in the left field, they only have an immediate need, no long-term goals, no sublimation of thought, it like a constant real time game. No future, no past, just now.
Living in the now is nice, but there is value to long term plans.


Questioning My Sanity


Advice Without the Price

Advice Without the Price
Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire West Africa
Sunday, October 29, 2006

Advice without the Price…
Is not Travel Advice.

It is an opinion, not of value, has little importance in my world. I am beset with advice from readers that tell me where to go and what to do, but do not explain the price.

Go to this Hotel, it it is wonderful!
- I hope so; it cost 150 US dollars per night, duh. -

Go to this country.
- I would, but the plane ticket to the country is 2000 US Dollars. -
The write back, and tell me the cheap way in, but this is needed in step one, in the first Advice.

Abidjan to Bangkok, flight is 1350 US Dollars one-way.

I told this, I said what I paid; I expose myself to the idiots of the planet… This is the problem, people are afraid to hear the idiots of the planet pipe up and say,

- Andy, you could have got the ticket with so and so for 700 US Dollars -

I hope they post a comment, I expose myself on purpose, I know there is a better cheaper way to travel between Abidjan and Bangkok, or Asia in general.

I have the self-esteem, I know I made a good decision, nevertheless, I also know there is always a better way, there is always rooms for improvement.

People delight in telling how they are smarter than you or it, me is an interesting thing about people, the need for the power to say,
- I was smarter than you… -

Reminds me of grade school, you are stupid, you are stupid, like some phase the person never grew out of, however, it is painful to receive nasty and insulting letters, and I understand why people do not say price.

On the other hand, let us be adults, everyone is searching for a good deal and everyone seems to keep his or her mouths shut. I know that often it is a horrible deal and they know it, but they love the place. This is good, loving a place is the idea of travel, and we should go to places we love.


Advice Without the Price


Tired of Africa

Tired of Africa
Abidjan Cote d’Ivoire West Africa
Saturday, October 28, 2006

I am ready to leave, I am tired of people in Africa, they are just getting annoying, I can never speak English and everyone wants something. The girls are always friendly, but in a child like way.

I am tired of paying double the price of anything, triple, quadruple, I am tired. The value of what you get is bad. Bananas and FanYogo Glase, is good, but the rest, is ridiculous. I paid 6 dollars for a can of Pringles the other day, because I needed something in my stomach.

Eating in the restaurants is minimum 10 US dollars, and you get nothing good. The African Dream has been the first restaurant where I pay excessively much, but I can get something cooked the way I want.

I am frustrated, I just want to stand under a shower, have hot water, and everything sort of work. Thailand is annoying, but it still works twice as well as Africa. It is as if we are suppose to put up with half working everything and pay double. The paying double is the problem for me, when you feel a value is not good, and then you always feel a little cheated. I pay 12,000 CFA for a room; this is about 25 US dollars. In most of the planet, I would be living in top luxury, however in Africa; this is just the going price.

I have had some exceptional values, but generally, I feel like I am on a pay too much vacation.

Where are the people, where are the tourist, there is nobody, just me, I am the only tourist in West Africa, I have now traveled I think about 2 and one half months, I see nobody, a few drinking French guys, in Ghana a few volunteers, but the world is not coming to Africa.

Two people can travel for the price of one, I could easily haul a girl with me, and not cost extra. My fare is paying for them, but the problem is the language and transportations.

I cringe when someone says; show they go on the Amazon River boats. I did it, I know it, but hard to say or recommend you go live like an Animal and have 100 Hammock on your head and a fat persons butt in your face.

The same is for the Bush Taxi, I call them Cattle Cars, and the Fat women abound in them. They put as many people in a car as possible, hard to tell a person to go and do this. I am special; I will travel to any city and stop anywhere to sleep. I do not have a plan that is written in rock, I do just wander, when I am tired of the taxi, I depart and life is good.

Nevertheless, the average traveler, they need to have as many tourist destinations as possible, this coupled with a Bush taxi is difficult.

The truth is, Africa is extremely easy to drive, and 99 percent of persons coming here have a vehicle and drive. Backpacking is out, and overland driving is in, I am a different person here.

The whole system, guidebooks, everything is set up for the car, there is 90 percent Motels and 10 percent little mom and pop hotels.

I think about a motorcycle, my next trip will probably enter either into Ethiopia, or into Senegal, but who knows and who cares.


Tired of Africa


Abidjan to Bangkok

Abidjan to Bangkok
Abidjan Cote d’Ivoire West Africa
Saturday, October 28, 2006

680,000 CFA one-way and about 700,000 round trips.
1340 USA Dollars one-way for flight from Abidjan to Bangkok, Thailand.

I traveled today from Grand Bassam to Abidjan, leaving at 7:15 AM in the morning and arrived back at the Africa Dream Hotel in the Grand Bassam at 12:25 PM.

The most I ever paid for a plane ticket in my life, a new record. For sure to travel to Africa it is best to buy a round trip ticket and have your exit strategy very clear. It is amazingly expensive to fly inside of Africa and to fly outside of Africa.

Emirates Airlines is about 680,000 CFA
Ethiopia or Kenya Airlines fly for around 1100 US dollars, but then you need to spend one night either in Ethiopia or Kenya, being that I am not so healthy, I wish to get to Thailand and cheap hotels, the cost will be easily made up living in a Hotel for five dollars per night. I leave on Tuesday and about 20 hours of flight, I guess.

To travel from Bassam to Abidjan is an experience, I have to first walk to the road, catch a group taxi to the centre or Marche, I then hop in a Peugeot Station wagon and hope if fills, the guy drives to Abidjan for 500 CFA, about one dollar US. Once I arrive at the end, when he will go no further, I get out and try to explain to Taxi. I wanted to go first to Emirates office, the man spent one half hour trying to find it, asking, I finally ask myself and found the address in a Tiama Hotel or something. I stop; they say it opens at 8:00, then waiting, they say 8:30, the finally waiting more they say 9:00. They just guess, this is the problem, nobody every knows anything. I get in the office and check.

The taxi driver literally walked around for one-half hour trying to get change for me, from my 5000 CFA note, for the taxi. This is about 10 US dollars, and amazing how no change is possible, I get so tired of everyone just working, but not able to give change.

I cannot believe it but the price is actually 1340 Dollars one way to Bangkok from Abidjan.

I go to the Novotel building and Catran Tours where I have already reserved a ticket, the French man in the hotel knew this lady. I just went to Emirates to be sure the price was right. I pay for the ticket, big piles of CFA and long time counting. I had spent about one-hour in the room counting, recounting, and putting in a plastic bag.


Abidjan to Bangkok


Plane Tickets to Thailand

Plane Tickets to Thailand
Grand Bassam Cote d’Ivoire West Africa
Friday, October 27, 2006

I am trying to buy plane tickets to Thailand, it is stressful, I am weak, and the malaria has drained me of energy. I am eating well now, so I should regain my strength.

Today, I make the work of traveling to Abidjan from Grand Bassam, the trip takes about one hour to go about 25 miles.

French, and more French and I am not that good, it is a confusion to travel when you cannot speak the language. I can see why people are afraid to travel to foreign countries, they speak different languages. I know how to travel, but there is still the stress of people. People can be very difficult, and never simple, they have minds of their own.

On one hundred percent power, I can do this type of trip easy, on one-half power; I must work twice as hard to make sure I make no mistakes. One forgotten passport, proper money, able to pull money, ATM’s and all, there is many ways to have problem.

Yesterday, it looked like rain; this would stop the whole process. I can appreciate the beauty of getting in my car, and driving to the Travel Agent.


Plane Tickets to Thailand