When we were cycling in Africa we camped in one of the creepiest campsites on the planet.
Like many days in Africa, I was cycling alone. Dave had gone ahead with the men's peleton racing through the Kalahari Desert, Namibia, but I couldn't keep up and was stuck in the void of being in the middle of the racing men and the expedition riders that were hours behind.
We cycled up to 200 km each day on the Tour d'Afrique, a cycling race from Cairo to Cape Town and this day was no exception. I had many a lonely road to cycle through but never really thought anything of it.
Approximately 150 km after leaving camp, a turn off appeared in the middle of the Kalahari Desert Highway, Namibia. It was a lonely stretch of road and the turn off was even lonelier. A single lane dirt path lead away from the safety of the road deeper into the desert.
I started to think that I had taken a wrong turn, but then I saw a person up ahead. Whew, I was on the right track. As I approached the person didn't move. As I road closer, the person just stood frozen on the side of the road, waiting on what appeared to be his bicycle. I was beginning to wonder if I should turn back.
But I thought about and decided that I had to be on the right route. I had to be O.K., I followed the flags, I checked the distance on my odometer and this was the only turn off in the area.
My heart was pounding as I rode closer.
Then I breathed a sigh of relief as I realized that it was a statue. But then again why was a statue standing alone in the Middle of the Kalahari desert? I kept riding down the long abandoned path and more of these creepy sculptures kept popping up. They were set up in various strange scenes. Sitting on motorcycles, working at a wagon and perched on go carts and bicycles.
They had these heads that looked like pumkins and every horror movie from my childhood flashed through my brain. Some very disturbed person designed these creepy scenes and we were staying in their camp!
Once I saw the trucks and tents of the racers already set up, I relaxed. Dave was waiting for me with soup in hand, and I had the chance to even take a shower in this strange place. The creepy feeling started to fade and I was thrilled to be in the company of a crowd.
If it were just Dave and I camping in this campsite I think I would have taken my chances and keep on cycling into the night.