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Archive for June, 2005

Why TravelHard.com?

June 10th, 2005 Comments off

I’ve been asked a few times why I choose that name for my site.

I’ve been called “Hardcore Traveler” by a friend in Tanzania. Because I love hardcore music and because of the route I had done and the one I was planning to take. HardcoreTraveler.com was a bit too long (and already taken) so I had to find something else. I was listening to Andrew W.K. CD I brought with me and when I heard the song Party Hard I thought that Travel Hard would be a nice combination as well.
Travel Hard, Travel Light, Travel Far!

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Visiting Tribes Men

June 10th, 2005 Comments off

That’s another very hard one. There’s good and bad things about this practice.

I still think that going on an organized tour/trip to tribe’s people is bad. It is very interesting of course but it brings them our values faster than they can take it. They lived for centuries without money (for example) and now they ask 1$ for a picture of them. Doesn’t it sounds strange to you? If they don’t ask for money, they’ll ask for sugar or cigarettes. I think the impact of one or two persons on them is far less then any trucks full of tourists coming to their village for 2 hours. What good is it to them if in 10 or 20 years they don’t exist anymore and all wear 2Pac t-shirt? Actually I think we should learn from them, they’re usually far more in harmony with nature than us. Isn’t it utopist?

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Giving to the locals

June 10th, 2005 Comments off

That’s a hard question, should we give money, food, clothes, candy, pen, etc to the locals when we visit a poorer country?

Maybe the fist question to ask is: Do you do that at home? I’m not against giving to the country you’re visiting but giving candy to a kid or money to a junky won’t help them in the long run. Even pen to children is not a very good idea in my opinion because it gives them the impression that we (the visitor) have everything and they will expect a “gift” from the next visitor they see. There are some places that I’ve visited where every single person I met asked me for a “gift”.
If you want to give pen, give it to a school or a teacher, they will know who really needs it. Same for money, give it to an organization that is renown, at least your money will really help someone that is trying to get a better life. Giving to kids can take them out of school to get that easy money. The parents might also force them to beg to visitors. Of course there’s nothing bad in feeding someone that’s dying from hunger. It’s better to give him food than money, at least you know what he’ll do with it. Use your common sense and it should be all right.

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Au pays des Samburus, de la viande et de la biere chaude

June 10th, 2005 Comments off

Salut!

Je ne sais pas trop par ou commencer telment il s’est passe de choses depuis le dernier mail. Je sais, ca ne fait pas plus d’une semaine, mais j’ai vecu des trucs pour plus d’un mois d’aventure!

Read more…

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Tourist or Traveler?

June 2nd, 2005 Comments off

Some people seem to think it’s the same thing. For me there’s a difference.

First of all there’s different kind of tourists.
A tourist is someone who go in a five star resort and stay there. He doesn’t go outside the gate unless his in a taxi provided by his hotel.
Those who stick to organized tour are also tourists for me and in some extend some Overlanders (big truck that go all around Africa) can also fit in that category. They have no need to find either food or accommodation as a guide plans everything. The participants (tourists) are taken by the hand to go from point A to point B.

A traveler is someone that goes somewhere on his own (or with friends) and can go to a place that doesn’t figure on a map or guidebook. The traveler will be interested in the local culture and will try to talk to the locals and know some of the local language.

I really hope I’m a traveler.

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Nairobi – WARNING

June 2nd, 2005 Comments off

That’s a post I made on the Lonely Planet website after I left Nairobi. It one one the most dangerous city in Africa, now you’re warned!

Be VERY carefull in Nairobi.

The problem is that even if you spend up to 14 days there you might NOT get robed or mugged! That was a very disapointing fact for me, so I tought I should share this with you guys.

Even walking alone around 9:00pm downtown Nairobi I haven’t been attacked. Ok, I have to admit that 2 person try to scamed me, but that was in broad day light : I’m the guy from your hotel, please help me blablabla. Yeah, witch hotel? Euh… bye! And they vanished!

That is obviously a sarcastic message, just to tell you that Nairobi is not as dangerous as you might hear. You have to be carefull and don’t go wander around poor suburb at night. Just take normal precaution you would take in any major city and you should be fine. Don’t belive everyone that claim to be on your hotel or want to “talk to you 5 minutes about your country” and you should be fine.

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J’ai une mouche dans ma liqueure et ca m’ecoeure… meme pus

June 2nd, 2005 Comments off

Bonjour a tous,

Qu’est-ce qu’on fait dans une ville ou y’a rien a faire et qu’on a marcher toutes les rues d’est en ouest et du nord au sud? On lit : Apprendre l’Arabe sans peine(!?) et oui! On va sur internet! Je me suis demande longtemps si je partais aujourd’hui ou demain, la il est trop tard, je ne peux plus partir. Je me disais que j’allais sauver de l’argent en restant ici mais avec tout le temps que j’ai passer sur internet aujourd’hui ca change rien. Bon, faut dire que c’est environt 1$ can de l’heure, donc autant en profiter!

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North of the Equator (and a Mada warp-up)

June 2nd, 2005 Comments off

Hi all,

After flirting a long time with the equator line in Uganda and Kenya I’m finaly north and should stay there for a while. I left Nairobi yesterday and will continue north to Ethiopia on the North Horr corridor. Strangly I felt quite happy to be in Nairobi, maybe because I knew the city and didn’t felt lost. I was a bit sad to leave Mada of course, but still happy to be back on the continent.

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