I'm planning ahead for the next journey, this time from England back down to Cape Town through West Africa instead of East Africa. But I have a dilemma. Like the first journey, I want to do the next journey in a Beach Buggy. It's what I feel makes my writing special, and puts me in a niche to sell books other writers of my ability wouldn't be able to get away with. (This is a yet unproven theory.)
Perhaps, one day, when my writing is sought after and I'm famous, I'll be able to do the journey in a Land Rover and still sell a million copies, but until then, I'll rely on a combination of my limited skill and the funkiness of a Beach Buggy to hook a potential agent.
But my wife cringes at the idea of travelling in a Buggy. "I'm not riding through Africa in one of those things," she says.
So, what are my options? A Volkswage van comes to mind. Perhaps paint it bright yellow and do some funky mods to it. But are there lots of replacement parts for a VW van throughout Africa? I don't want to be stuck with a broken spring in the middle of the Congo and not be able to get a replacement without expensive and timely importing.
It's French West Africa, so any French car might be a great idea, except I hate French cars. For journeys like this, I'm a VW man. For the city, I'll settle for a Honda or a Toyota - definitely not a French car. But for the epics, it's VW or bust.
So, back to the Beach Buggy. I considered buying a Land Rover as well, inviting a few other paying travellers along and turning it into an epic journey, but I don't want to be in charge of an entire convoy all the way. Two cars, two expenses, two potential problems. Many people, many different ideas of travel, many different potential problems.
Me and my wife in a Beach Buggy - I have some more convincing to do...