Dakar

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Despite our baggage being woefully overweight, the flight from Bamako to Dakar was uneventful.  We had eventually made it to the westernmost point of Africa, although  unfortunately not under our own steam.

 
We had decided to book into a hotel as close as possible to the airport, as we were leaving early the next day, but the Airport Hotel still provided a stern challenge  in transporting all our bags, especially  with the high humidity and the heat. Fortunately, a local taxi driver befriended us, and assisted with the bags in exchange for a guaranteed ride into town, albeit trying his luck with charging exorbitant prices!! Luckily we were seasoned travelers by this stage and were able to negotiate him down substantially!

 Streets of Dakar

Once booked into the hotel, we left the airport with our driver, who took us on a short tour of the outer area of Dakar. We quickly realized that Dakar was clearly a lot more sophisticated than much of the rest of Africa, with a “European “ feel  to much of the  shops and businesses. We were so sad not to be able to spend more time here as it looks like very interesting city, vibey, full of life and energy.

 Local "chicks" on the beach      locals relaxing by the sea
We drove along part of the shoreline, and on the driver’s recommendation, stopped off for the evening at a local beach and spent some time with the locals relaxing there, before finding a nearby restaurant to have our ”last supper” .

 Fresh seafood, cooked on the beach  Dakar beach

Although Stewart was less than impressed by the tasteless local beer, we had a lovely meal overlooking the sea reminiscing about the past 5 months in this, the mother of al continents and wondering where life will lead us next. To say we were truly sad, is an understatement, as we both realized that our appetite for traveling has as yet not been satisfied. Only problem being that our only means of continuing, was abandoned in the neighbouring country and with no immediate solution in sight, we had to make peace with the situation.

 

We left for the hotel and after a few hours of fitful sleep, got up at 3.30 due to the incredibly bad smell in the room as well as the noise levels in the hotel. We  arrived at “Departures” all dreary eyed and despite our best efforts to spin a suitable sob story, we had to pay  for the overweight luggage. We were joining a SAA flight from New York which had stopped to refuel at Dakar, and so after a last look at Dakar from the departure lounge, we were on our way back to South Africa, feeling a bit displaced but still with a song in our hearts as we were on our way to see our beloved sons, family and friends.