In Tandem with Africa and Asia

A teacher's journey over three continents on a tandem bicycle
Having worked for 8 years as an economist in the City (Schroders & Citigroup), Stuart transitioned into teaching in 2009 and worked at Cranleigh School in the UK until 2013. His year long cycling venture helped to build and consolidate links for Cranleigh with Kawama School in Kitwe, Zambia. He has recently moved back to London to set up an eco...nomics department in Morpeth School in Tower Hamlets, London. More

Stage 8: 3 types of fun on the road to Kenya...

Dar to Nairobi; 950km, November 28th - December 10th.

Fun isn’t always fun. So Jim Blyth, a Chamonix mountain guide told me in 2010. During Type 1 fun, you enjoy both doing the activity and reflecting on it. Type 2 isn’t much fun at the time but you enjoy looking back on it. Type 3 is neither.  I explained this to my new stokers Rob Heck & Emma Watson Mack as we planned the next stage over a Kili (local beer) in Dar. Our aim was to avoid Type 3 and get close to the real Kili before Rob would have to go back to work…

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The Importance of Remittance Payments & Mobile Banking in Africa…

Joseph is 29 years old and makes a living selling vehicle parts in the dusty trucker town of Igawu in Southern Tanzania. When he approached me during my breakfast and flashed 2 fresh $100 bills, I was naturally interested to know where they came from. I offered him a ride north to find out…

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Stage 7, part II: Beasts & Beaches in Movember…

Stage 7, part II: Mikumi to Zanzibar & around, November 12-26th 502 km

The best part is that you get to cycle through Mikumi national park and be right in the middle of elephants, giraffe etc. Only national park in TZ you can ride a motorcycle and bike through… Whatever you do, do not ride this section at night. Lions and hyenas in Mikumi national park and if they don't get you, the trucks and buses will – haha”….Andres Perez’s warning about the trucks had been accurate. I didn’t fancy getting eaten by a lion either so I set off to cycle the 50km through the park feeling somewhat nervous…

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Stage 7, part I: Harsh Trucks but Kind Strangers….

Stage 7, part I: Mbeya to Mikumi. 3– 10 November, 512km

"You are now on a major trucking and bus route all the way to Arusha and the lack of shoulder and the strong wind is probably going to make it hairy. The tarmac has melted and the overloaded trucks have smudged it into treacherous tracks. As you probably know, the truckers and buses could not give two shits about a cyclist on the road and will not even consider accommodating you, especially in Tanzania”…. The words from Andres Perez, a seasoned motorcyclist in the region were with me as I set off from Mbeya, with approximately 800km to go before Dar-es-Saleem and the prospects of a week’s R&R on the beaches of Zanzibar.

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Stage 6: A hitchhiker's guide to Northern Malawi & Southern Tanzania...

Stage 6: Nkhata Bay to Mbeya, 430km. October 13th - 19th

"It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. You have no such accurate remembrance of a country you have driven through" If Hemingway was describing how best to understand the physical geography of a land, what better way to understand its people than by offering them a lift on your very own bicycle taxi...

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What is the value of life in Africa?

In the UK, the department of transport uses a figure of £1.2m per human life when carrying out cost benefit analysis for new transport projects, for example the building of a new, safer road. I'm not sure the road agencies in Africa attempt the same level of analysis but perhaps it is a useful concept to explain road safety, or the lack of it...

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