If you are reading this I am dead or I have crossed over in to Valhalla.
Saturday night was one if the most insane, intense, improptu and unbelievable things I have ever experienced.
Generations of Rallyer children will hear of this and doubt it really happened… even I’m not sure it did.
Named the Gateway to Hell, Darvaza Crater is a massive gas crater burning uncontrollably in the middle of the Turkmenistan desert.
It’s 4 hours into the Karakum Desert (the hottest desert in Asia – my sweaty thighs concur). The road there is so bad, locals charge you to get you un-bogged and wait like sharks hunting baby seals!
The site is a giant hole in the Earth erupting with flames licking its sides, exploding gas balls and intense enough heat to melt a Kardashian at 200m.
This spectacle was mind blowing to say the least and one of the greatest events I have had the pleasure of enjoying…..until….
Hew (Mongol Mongrels) had somehow cohersed/bribed the local band from the previous nights pub to play a one-off gig at the Crater. They even brought their own generator – no gas powered instruments apparently!
And what a Gig it was. With an exclusive audience of 23 drunk travellers and the back drop a raging fire pit against the pitch black dessert night…GASTONBURY 2019 was born!!
With a full five piece band punching out some great English (And Russian) hits and fuelled on a volatile mix of fatigue, the flaming Hell Pit back drop, €3 BOTTLES of vodka and pure adrenaline, the mentally challenged Rallyers…. WENT OFF LIKES FROGS IN A SOCK!!
Dancing out of control to 4.30am, we watching “disgarded” empty gas canisters explode out of the inferno to the sounds of beating drums, wailing guitar riffs and 80’s keyboard – we really did finish with a bang!
We woke to a stunning sunrise and a warm desert breeze across a pristine untouched landscape. The sounds of rustling wild grass, birds on the wing and the retching of guts in nine different languages!
This life altering event was then balanced out with the worst roads we have experienced EVER.
Roads so rough, violent and dangerous they have a to have Parole Officer sign off one day a week!
We seemed to hit every pot hole and sump smashing crevass. We were swearing and laughing with every grinding crunch… We averaged around 46 curses a kilometre!
The road eventually lost the plot and killed our roof rack! This testament to fine Italian engineering and design, now sits on 4 spare tyres held down with several ratchet straps and blind hope. The roof is now caving in and inside head clearance is now reduced with every bounce as the ratchet straps go through the windows!
Uzbekistan awaits…let’s see what they have to offer coz Turkmenistan you mentally hot and sun stroked crazy fecker, you beat us like we owed you money but I will love you for ever!!