Sunday, November 24, 2013

Cape Town to Goodwood Day 23:Toilet Seat Crisis in Malakal

Lady Heath flew from Jinja in Uganda to Mongalla in the Sudan (now South Sudan). She then headed for Malakal, which we suspect the Spirit of Artemis may have reached by now (we're right; see below).
Along the way, she dived down on the houses of the various district commissioners 'with whom I had made friends the previous year when I was studying the route on the ground".
In Mongalla, she was greeted by an officer of the Sudan Defence Force on a push bike along with "hordes of natives" bearing buckets of water.  "They are so used to water-cooled engines that the arrival of an aeroplane is synonymous to them with water".
All Lady Heath wanted were stones and sand to fill the sandbags she used to weigh down her airplane and save it from any winds that might blow up.  "My sandbags even in a wind of 40 to 45mph always held."
Mongalla was hot - up to 44 degrees - and she had to be careful not to leave her spanners  in direct sunlight as she went through her daily routine on the Avro's engine "or they blister your hands when you take them up".
She then took off for Malakal - "the worst part of the trip over completely wild desert populated mainly by honey-badgers, ants, hornets and hostile natives".

Malakal, South Sudan, lies along the right bank of the White Nile River  and is 430 miles (690 km) south of Khartoum.

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