Like A Japanese tourist bus doing Golden Week we smashed through Europe yesterday.

…. driving by, shooting quick pics out the car window like LA gang bangers….

Five countries in one day. Germany.Austria.Slovenia.Croatia.Serbia. Get here.

I can now order a burger and a beer in nine different languages and pay in six different currencies!

So todays Mission Jim, if you choose to accept it, is to get through Serbia and Bulgaria to the Asian side of Turkey.

You Have 18 hours….

Dun dun dada Dun dun dada Dun dun dada Dun dun dada Dun dun dada Dun dun dada

doo de doo doo de doo doo de doo doo do

And Mongol Mongrels are off!!

Today is the day. Ten years in the dreaming. One year in the planning. Six months in the grovelling and a lifetime of memories to be made.

Or the most short lived, over anticipated, anticlimactic moment since that time with Sharon Manisky at the back of the school disco!

The Poms are driving from London and will get the underwater snorkel train (aka Brexit Express) to France while the token Aussie will catch a flight from Dublin with the plan to rendezvous in Luxembourg to:-

A) enjoy a light supper before turning in for an early night.

B) meet up, give man hugs all round, chuck our bags through the door, grab a quick Lynx Shower-in-a-can and roll into Luxembourg like it’s first night of camp and we just got paid!

C) be so knackered, we will have one beer, call it a night by 11.00 and fall asleep like the middle aged old farts we are.

No matter what, this is it.
Oh This time I know it’s the real thing
I can’t explain what I’m feeling
I’m lost for words….

Sorry…Got all Danni Minogue there….

So eastward and onwards it is!!

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Like our Mongolia visas!…a bit bloody hard to do a London to Mongolia Rally if you can’t actually get INTO Mongolia!! 

Who wants to do “The London to Somewhere-close-by-but-not-quite-Mongolia-Rally” . We finally got the visa and our passports back so can drive a bit further now…theoretically speaking.

As for the driving bit, we reviewed our tool kit and discovered we didn’t have one!  

Considering none of us are in anyway mechanically minded, (we had trouble spelling AA) ….we went ahead anyway and sent Tony to the local tool supplying type establishment shop thingy.

 Armed with a shopping list that included gloves, duct tape, chicken wire, plyers, jumper leads, lubricant spray and a very large tarpaulin,  it was no surprise store security followed Tony for most of his shop.

Shopping trolley full of said items, the lady at the checkout nervously eyed up our Tony like he just bought a Serial Killer Starter Kit.

Tony explained that it was actually for three middle aged blokes to drive from London to Mongolia in a Fiat Panda and this was our emergency tool kit.

I think she was more comfortable with the serial killer concept. The balaclava probably didn’t help matters either…

So the car is sorted, the visas all locked in and departure date set.

But, there is one more hurdle to ponder….how many days CAN you get out of one pair of underpants…if you really really tried.

It’s just a couple of weeks before we head off and things are getting towards the point end!

We almost have all our visas sorted. Almost. Seriously, don’t know how Jason Bourne did it but he must have the patience of a saint. As with anything good in life, it’s worth waiting for…these countries better be AMAZING!!

As for the car?  Well OBH is looking the business. We have added a roof rack (ex-Range Rover that has been cut in half and then half again and cost more in petrol than it did to buy!), tyres that would make a John Deer tractor envious, a night driving light set that can see so far we can give you next week’s lotto numbers and….a glove box full of hope and optimism…and few prayers.  We have packed more St Christopher Medals than a bus full of Popes on a road trip to Lourdes….

Yesterday the guys at Fast Signs did the decals (designed by the brilliant Mark Harrison of Huge Design) and WOW, it’s absolutely awesome, better than we imagined even! Thank you so much everyone!

Finally, we now have the most important component of the car. AIR CON!! Seriously, if the brilliant guys at Collins Motors handn’t managed to get the air con fixed we were going to up hit Lynx up for a MAJOR sponsorship deal! Three lads, foreign beers, exotic diet and limited hygiene facilities. The Geneva Convention may have to step in here!

As it stands, 66% (2)of the Mongrels will drive from London and get the underwater train to Calais while the final third (1) will fly with the plan to meet them in Luxembourg. Plane, Trains, and Automobiles…but this may change.

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Now we’re off to figure out how to get 3 x large guys, 2 x 20 litre Jerry Cans, 2 x spare wheels, 2 x 25 litre water drums, tents, tools and supplies in a car designed for no more than the weekly shop!

Visas? Where we’re going, we don’t need visas!! Huh? What? Oh…hang on. We do! Lots of the bleeding things! So the visa process has 

begun. Bureaucracy at its finest but the folk at the Visa Machine are hard at work getting it sorted. Would this be a bad time to mention…

Just kidding.

We have a route. OK….Hew Google Mapped a whole lot of places we never heard of and joined them together. We then counted the places,  multiplied it by the miles and divided that by the days. 

A little bit of wee came out followed by hysterical giggles and multiple colourful expletives. 

…a few more expletives….then enthusiastic nods, manic smiles and some badly timed high fives. (Tony’s eye should have 100% vision by the start of the Rally)