Thursday, May 13, 2010


Best friend is fleeing the country. By choice, not dictat, but the result is the same. I will be best friendless for at least a year. His self-imposed exile with best fiance will commence in Mongolia and, as we discussed this, I said that, should devoted partner and I win the lottery, we would do the Mongol Rally and meet up with them. Prompting, of course the question: what is the Mongol Rally? The short answer is the Mongol Rally is awesome. The longer answer involves perhaps fighting with Uzbek rebels and running out of petrol (this is a Euro thing) somewhere in a desolate landscape and resorting to yak hunting. The longer answer is also awesome.

I don't know where it started though I know I can blame Tim Cahill's Road Fever for much of it (Tierra del Fuego to Prudhoe Bay - sadly the lame-os at Guinness Records no longer allow you to break these sorts of records citing "safety concerns" - lames). Then, as anyone who has ever spoken to us knows, we spent the summer after graduation driving. A lot.

But best friend asked why something like this, 3-6 weeks of driving, would appeal to us. After all, there wouldn't be much time for sightseeing (I disagree; I think we could drive fast enough during the driving parts to leave ample time for local color), it isn't the most conventional of trips, and there is the danger part. I brought this up with devoted partner who, while not setting his sights on the Mongol Rally anytime soon, would certainly join up were having a job not mandatory, and he somewhat coldly analyzed our motivations thusly:

We're relaxed when we drive.

Devoted partner doesn't mind being behind the wheel while I ooh and ahh at scenery and goats who climb trees, and now that I actually know how to drive, devoted partner can feel free to snooze in the passenger seat while I drive (and ooh and ahh at goats). We have twice gone (by google's count) 368 kilometers out of our way simply to enjoy the highway between Nice and Italy. We like being in the car together. I can't remember a single in-car fight about getting lost or almost getting killed (we've both been guilty once). While trying to find a good photo to describe why we like that stretch of highway so much, I found these guys and seriously considered learning how to ride a bike in the hope we could go with them next time.

Perhaps we're just especially canine, leaning our heads out the windows as feeling the force of the wind as we waggle our tongues, but even the thought of getting to the Mongol Rally one of these days (did you know the Paris-Dakar rally is no longer run from Paris to Dakar? this upsets me greatly as that was on the bucket list and I liked our chances) makes me happy. If any of you can think of a way to make it revenue neutral, I'd like to hear about it.

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