I wind my way down from the mountains and into Lomé, the capital of Togo. Right from the start I like the city – it’s much cleaner than other capitals I have been to lately, the roads are great and people almost drive with a level of care.
I’m here to apply for three more visas for onwards travel, which necessitates a stay of a few days, and I’m extremely happy to pull into Chez Alice, a very famous Overlander hangout. Alice, originally from Switzerland, moved to Togo some 40 years ago and started this hotel / restaurant / campground / everything place, and has been running it full-time ever since. Now aged 92, Alice is still there every day, and I throughly enjoy talking to her about anything and everything she has seen change over the last 40 years. Togo used to be much friendlier, she says.
While chatting one afternoon a familiar face rides in – a friend on a motorbike I met back in Bamako. He has come via Ghana, while I went North through Burkina, so we have tons of stories to swap, and details to work out for the road ahead.
Also staying at the place is a Swiss guy who drove down in a full size motorhome. It’s hard to believe, though he says it wasn’t too bad, other than scraping on every single speed bump and pothole. Of course, he’s looking to sell it, not drive it back North
Alice’s son has a sweet Jeep CJ, though they just finished re-building the V8 a few days ago, and he seems intent to continually test how it performs at redline while coming and going all day long.
Based on how it sounds, I suspect it won’t be performing for long.
My visas are all a success and so with that, I bid goodbye to Togo. A tiny and amazing country that I have really enjoyed.