Day 92: Rain!

Soutpiel Safari
John & Jenny
Sat 5 Feb 2011 08:53
Day 92: Friday 4 February 2011. Sheraton Hotel, Abuja. N09 03.745 E007 29.102  Distance driven 0 km
At 0900 a smiling Mary was there at the street window of the Congolese Embassy with our passports!
Then we went across to the new shopping mall opposite the Sheraton to do emails.  The hourly rate at the Sheraton is N3,000 (about £12); at the mall it is N300 but the service is much slower and the whole process was rather frustrating.  It is a hot, dusty walk across 5 lanes of fast-moving traffic to get there, the place is very new and there are almost no customers yet.  The cafe at the Internet hot-spot had a flashy menu but everything we chose was "not available" - only item available at breakfast time was chicken and chips!
Jenny spent the afternoon working while I took out the fridge to investigate how to use the 230 volt AC facility.  I ran the engine for 2 hours to charge the battery- it is a real problem keeping the fridge going in this heat.
We went for Happy Hour again and then decided to treat ourselves to a meal in the hotel. The overlanders advice was that the pizza restaurant offered best value - buffet salad and "design your own pizza" for N2,800 (£11.50).  The buffet salad was probably the best I have ever had, certainly the most enjoyable, and the pizzas were very good but too filling. However, at N10,600 (£45) it was not a cheap evening.  That's the downside of camping almost for free at a 5 star hotel.
We had started eating at an outside table but had to move inside as it started to rain and it became torrential.  This is the first rain we have had since mid-November in Morocco.  If it is an isolated event it is OK but serious rain is going to give us real problems in Cameroon and the countries further south with dirt roads.  We had hoped we had timed our trip to get through to Namibia before the rains, so watch this space!