3th of June – 10th of June 2019:
Since there is an extreme risk in these countries to get Malaria, Fabian started immediately with the malaria therapy after getting the fever. The next day, he made a free Malaria test in the nearby hospital. For the most common type of malaria “plasmodium falciparum”, there is a quick test, since more than 70% of the malaria cases result from this pathogen. Indeed, the quick test and the blood analysis later on confirmed this type. After three days of treatment, Fabian felt much better already and was ready to continue cycling.
Ramadan was finished and therefore nobody was working in Freetown. John suggested visiting Bureh beach, one of the most beautiful beaches in Sierra Leone, if not in all West Africa. Unfortunately, there was rain now and then, but we still went swimming in the warm ocean. We relaxed at the beautiful beach, before we drove back to the city with John’s car
Freetown is one of the few African cities that offer many amazing, clean beaches. At one of those beaches, we ate grilled chicken with fries and enjoyed the fresh sea breeze. During our week in Freetown, we enjoyed the luxury of a real bed, a hot shower, sofas and a washing machine. A few times, we cooked in the sparsely equipped kitchen to increase the variety in our diet. In contrary, 95% of the people in Freetown do not possess access to drinking water or own a connection to the wastewater system.
In 1787, former slaves from England, Canada and the U.S. settled in the region around Freetown. In the 19th century, Freetown was the capital of British-Western Africa. For that reason, English is the official language and people measure distances in miles.
On Friday evening, we visited a friend of John, met many interesting expats from different countries, and went to a club together. The locals in “China house” were a bit older, but danced like they were 20 years younger and therefore we had a fun night out.
Liberia and Ivory Coast require a visa and we thought to apply for both of them in Freetown. This worked relatively efficient, but was more expensive than expected. For a three month visa for Liberia we paid 100 USD each and for the same duration for Ivory Coast 85 USD.
While searching for a new rim for Fabian, we discovered the hilly city. After we crossed the lively market, we found the bicycle workshop recommended to us. For an incredible price of 15 US Dollars, Fabian could buy a new rim including all the work. The bicycle mechanic had to replace all spokes to the new rim, since he did not find a fitting hub.
Alone in the last week, the precipitation increased immensely and we wondered how much more it could rain. Unfortunately, we are still far away from the precipitation peak in July and August. Only in the month of August, it rains as much in Sierra Lone as in Switzerland all year.