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Venturesome Overland


We get passport stamps, Toto gets stickers. Thanks for the hookup, @lasertech_botswana 🌍 #totothelandrover #overland #venturesomemore #overlander #overlanding #womenoverlandingtheworld #overlandafrica #africaoverland #africatravel #africa #malawi #stickers #passportstamps #landroverafrica #alloyandgrit #landroverphotoalbum #landrover #landrover110 #landroverdefender #landroverdefender110 #defender110 #onelifeliveit #best4x4xfar #landroverclassic #landroverlove #landroverlife #traveltheworld #roamtheplanet #adventureisnecessary #startsomewhere
One of my (Julie) crankiest times traveling was in Singapore at the Raffles Hotel. I haaaaated it. It was the worst kind of tourist trap IMO: full of white people indulging in their colonial wet dreams. It was just...wrong. 😣 We never go to tourist stops when we’re on the road, but we did make a Vic Falls, or Mosi-oa-Tunya in the local Zambian language, stop. If you can get past the gift shops and tourists, it’s a lovely walk. The falls are beautiful and it felt so good to be out of the car. But there’s a definite reason we usually bypass touristy areas. 🙄 After thousands of miles through seven countries, it felt strange to be in such a big tourist center. It is super hard to square the tour busses that say “Explorer Club, Africa” and tourists in safari gear with the daily life (and hustle and grind) we’ve been seeing, and that exists juuust outside the city. No shade, but it’s a tiny bit jarring. 🤷‍♀️ It’s not as bad as the Raffles by a long shot. Nature does her thing, thankfully, and that can redeem just about anything. Still, we couldn’t help wondering what the place would look like without all the souvenir shops. 💧 #victoriafalls #vicfalls #mosioatunya #zambia #livingstone #touristtrap #overland #overlanding #overlander #overlandafrica #africaoverland #venturesomemore #selfie #nature #waterfall #waterfalls
Front left coil spring fixed, back left shock needs attention. Lower shock bushing and retaining rings disintegrated. Always check your bolt tightness after replacing parts, kids. 🔧 #overland #overlanding #overlander #overlandafrica #africaoverland #landrover #landroverdefender #landroverdefender110 #landrover110 #defender110 #alloyandgrit #landroverphotoalbum #onelifeliveit #best4x4xfar #landroverlife #totothelandrover #landroverlove #landroverowner
Annnnnd, good night from Zambia. Overlooking the Zambezi. #zambia #zambezi #zambeziriver #livingstone #africa #sundowners #overland #overlandafrica #africaoverland #sunset #river #venturesomemore

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Peter Rissenbeek on Enlightened Overland: Western…


“Sir, could you step out of the car?”


These words never bode well. We weren’t expecting much when the officer asked Steve to come around the back of the car.

We were stopped at a police checkpoint on the way home from Nxai Pans. Police checkpoints are common in Botswana, though less so than in some other African countries. They serve as a spot for officers to check for drunk driving and the road-worthiness of the vehicle.

In this case, after waving us aside, the officer asked Steve for his license and then proceeded to walk around the car checking the registration. At the back of the car he paused and tapped on the window. And then he asked Steve to come and join him.

“Your rear windshield wiper is broken. That will be 200 pula.”

“What?” Steve was incredulous. “200 pula? For one broken wiper? Really?” He fixed the officer with a look that I think communicates, worldwide, “come on, man. Is this legit?”

The officer didn’t blink. “Yes, 200 pula. It could be 500, you know. Do you have money?”

“Yes, I have money, but are you serious? Some trucks don’t even have rear wipers!”

“But you’re does. And it isn’t in working order.”

Steve tried the standard way to figure out if you’re being bribed or not. “Can you write me a receipt?”

“Of course. Please come inside, sir.” Definitely not a bribe, which isn’t surprising given Botswana’s extremely low rate of corruption.

So off Steve went, into the hut by the side of the checkpoint. The woman behind the desk looked up calmly. “What is the violation, please?”

“I don’t really kn-”

“Defective wiper!” The officer shouted cheerfully, before walking outside to flag down other cars.

She nodded at Steve. “200 pula, please.”

“Could you show me, please, what statute I’m violating?”

The woman didn’t hesitate, turning around to grab a thick book of codes and statutes, opening it up to a section in the middle and pointing – yes indeed, there it was, something along the lines of “vehicles with wipers must have all equipment in working order.”

Steve sighed and handed over the 200 pula, getting a receipt in the process. “You have to replace the wipers in a certain amount of time, you know. It’s on the receipt,” she said.

He nodded and came back to the car. As we drove off three other vehicles had been flagged down, all of the passengers wearing the same looks of incredulity as we had.

“Well,” Steve said. “It is legit. Looks like they’re raking in some money on the holiday weekend.” It doesn’t matter where you go – some things are the same everywhere. Anyone who has driven I-90 on a holiday weekend, or who has driven through road-work zones in Missoula, knows how this works.

I slumped down in my seat, annoyed at the expense and the delay in travel time.

“There’s one other thing,” he said, looking sideways at me with a rueful expression.

“What now?”

“You’re not going to like it,” he chuckled.

“Try me.”

“After I paid, the women told me how wonderful it is that I’m taking my wife touring through Botswana.”


“Yup. ‘Very sweet of you,’ she said.”

That plink-plink you might have heard was my eyeballs rolling out of my head and landing alongside the A1 outside of a checkpoint, somewhere in Botswana.

One comment on “A perfectly-legal, holiday-weekend shakedown

  1. Stephanie Edwards says:

    Bunch of things fixed on Pajero, AC, tires, etc. And you go down for a windshield wiper! ROTF, LMAO
    Love Mom.

    Liked by 1 person

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