One day before the finish: Bus Number 7 does charity and feeds the tired rally people.

Since they coudn't find internet yesterday we send out the report from yesterday now. The guys (and the girl) are relaxing, sitting in the pool of Hotel Tamana drinking beer.

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It was an absolutely regular (budapest-bamako) day.

We arrived to Kiffa not long after dusk, the place didn't really change a lot from last year, there are more mosquitos.

Kiffa is an OK place, it has a funny market, Szabi and Karcsi are back from the market with the raw material needed for the evening party, 6 kilos of nice fresh beef, vegetables and a great pair of slippers. This was not really expensive for around 18 Euros.
Obviously we couldn't visit the desert crocodile farm again as Idomou, the local guide and 75% of the teams of the competition category are stuck in the desert for the night between Atar and Tidjukja and are trying to escape now. It turned out in the morning that Idomou is not only good in ripping off people but he CAN navigate there!
With his guidance all the teams arrived safely to Kiffa and a tired but enthusiastic crowd gathered around our bus. They like us as we have beer and food and 230 Volts.
OK, not all the guys are selfish like this.

In my conservative estimation we have around 30 new teams now for the Caucasian Challenge 2009. Since I had no chance to print registration documents on the way - the only printer of the town was offline deep under a plastic cover - I asked them to identify themselves when signing up for the event to get the "fellowship" discount we promised all those who intended to sign up during the Budapest-Bamako rally.

Two friends arrived in the evening, Miki 'Four Finger' an unidentifyable mali citizen with short beard and someone else in a hat we cannot talk about. Celebrating this we had to drink some light drinks since Mauritania is a dry country and an Islamic republic...

In the evening the usual hoax started to spread, that based on intelligence sources someone spread the news that islamic radicals wanted to kidnap teams between Southern Mauritania and Northern Mali. We had a short briefing by the organizer in the evening where Idomou assured everyone that the whole rally is safe and by the way everyone should pay the tourist tax for him. We never know if all these guys just simply work fro their own interest or there is a real tourist tax... anyhow, the main point is the friendship of the nations and the fact that there's beer in Mali. Flag Forever Fan Club :)

We were surprised but the organizers had the same idea we came up with, to go to Ayoun El Atrous and then South on the new road called the Road of the Hope to Mali then Nioro du Sahel and at the end of the day stop in Diema where we have a major charity event. There's a foundation of an old French lady, they say you can find her after entering the village and you ask for the English Lady. They teach hjomeless and poor children to different activities/professions which helps them later to make some money like sewing, pottery, etc. We already had a plan back home to dress up the complete foundation and all its members, thanks to you dear friends at home. We'll make lots of photos so you can see collecting all these things were not in vain.

Everyone is healthy and we feel great, no worries.

And of course some photos: everyday life during Budapest-Bamako.

With the organizers in Ayoun el Atrous:

The Savanna in Mali:

A stop by a road check point - nice crowd isn't it?

A comfy place to stay:

Street vendor selling fresh bread:

Our pals on the Kiffa meat market:

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