Let's dust this blog...

... and start reporting about the new adventures of Bus Number 7!

The bus was hiding away from the public for several months after her long and exhausting trip to Bamako last year but she's prettier than ever and ready to show her face again.

So what happened?

We started the preparation much earlier this year and thanks to our sponsors we didn't have the terrible financial problems as last year.
We learned a LOT from the 2008 trip so the new bus will be a spacecraft compared to the previous one. Honestly last year's passengers are really jealus when we tell them what are the new features on the bus...

I don't think I can list all the amendments but let's pick some:

- new engine. A lot more horse powers, a better gearbox, a better differential and a whopping top speed of 110 km/h!! For a comparison: last year we managed to climb an elevation on the highway near Marseille with 23 km/h. You can imagine the reactions of the trucks and buses overtaking us. Our top speed was 77,4 in Morocco on a deserted road on completely flat surface (and some wind from the back?). Now this is all gone.

- there is heating. An efficient one! Last year we generously cut the heating system out to have more space (or something). We realized before the start that it's January and the temperature in Europe is way below 0. Sitting on the bus for hours and hours without heating... you can imagine. No wonder we drank up liters of hard liquore in the first 3-4 days.

One of the heaters installed inside this sofa. Seat heating :)

- Stainless water tank on the roof. Last year we had 2x100 liters of water in steel (iron) tanks so all we had was rusted water for a month. It was OK for washing the dishes but we didn't use the shower. These guys will have 300 liters of fresh water so they can even have warm shower if they want. Anytime.

- More storage. We took one big fridge out and installed a smaller one and a cupboard below. So not only the storage room is bigger in the kitchen but we can even use the fridge anytime since we can switch the power from gas to 24 Volts to 230 Volts. Luxury. Cold drinks anytime.

Next to the painted fridge (the tricolor of Mali by the way) you see the gas powered fridge on the top and a cupboard below.

- Bedroom made air tight. So smoke and dust won't over the passengers while sleeping. You have no idea how good this new feature is.

- There's a brand new electric system. All the lights can be switched individually, the bus has 1500 Watts of power all the time through inverters. There are 2 new high capacity batteries supplying this. No need to run the power generator if we want to play with the Xbox or watch DVDs or listen to music or charge many things at the same time.

- furnitures reinstalled. We lifted all the tables so it's easier to take a seat. Cup holders for all seats so the beer and the coke won't splash around when we reach the rocky piste.

- we had a great entertainment system even last year but we installed a new 30cm diameter disco sphere as well since it looks nice if we throw a party in the desert. Still considering of last minute buying of disco lasers and a fog machine.

Let me insert some photos - the bus here is still under construction but almost completed.

Isn't she beautiful??

The bedroom. Not really tidy now, we need to clean up. And refill the AC. And get new sheets for the matrasses.

The rooftop terrace. The wodden bars are closer to each other than last year so a chair can stand evenly on the surface. A lovely place to see the desert sunset.

The back part of the bus with the shower and the bedroom door.

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