First stop of the day was back at the offices of the clearing agent where Willy paid the harbour dues and the agent’s fee whilst Andre was assembling the jerry cans onto the roof rack of Lipstick.


Finally, the boys left Cartagena in a southerly direction aiming to reach Medellin that afternoon – Lipstick first had to get refuelled as it was only allowed a maximum of 5l Diesel whilst being shipped from Honduras to Cartagena.


A good time was had in Cartagena and the boys declared it as the nicest town seen sofarfar on the southern leg of the Pan-American drive.


A nice double highway made the exit of this big city very easy but soon this turned back to single lane traffic with Lipstick passing through the green countryside of Cartagena.


Nice cattle farms were seen again in what seems to be a very fertile area.


Soon the first glimpse of the Andes mountain appeared on the horizon whilst the boys were driving along the banks of a big river whose origin must be the very same mountains in a not too far distance.

The locals along the river banks make use of this never-ending supply of water to offer “car washes” to passing motorists and the boys often saw truck drivers giving their truck a makeover using fresh mountain water.


Whilst at first the guys were excited to see the Andes’s mountain rage this soon turned into a nightmare as they started to climb up on single lane roads.


An enormous amount of truck drivers must have thought that today is the ideal day to drive on the same road like Lipstick towards Medellin. Loaded to the maximum their speed hardly exceeded 35 km/h and soon the boys had to learn how to overtake these monsters on the winding roads towards the top of this gigantic mountain range.


The fact that Lipstick’s steering wheel is on the right side of the vehicle gave the guy on the left-hand passenger side full responsibility to signal the start of overtaking the Jumbo’s of the road.


“Put foot” “go for it” “ “Abort”  “Hamba”  “STOP” and various swear words towards the oncoming Jumbos and drivers trying to overtake Lipstick became the main conversation in Lipstick’s comfortable cabin.


This task did not become easier with the sun disappearing behind the mountains and the Jumbo trucks switching on their dozens of lights in front, on the side and the back of their vehicles making Lipstick look like a candle in the wind and them like a moving disco.


Often the boys got excited after overtaking seemingly the last truck in their que only to be faced with 100s more after picking up speed for short periods of time.


With all nerves changing from solid steel robes to thin strands of wire the boys reached the outskirts of Medellin 3 hours after nightfall – only to find out that the Holiday Inn Express had no open-air parking and the undercover parking was limited to 2m of height.


So, down with the Jerry Cans again and tilting the back spotlight down Lipstick just made it through the roller shutter hanging at a height of 2m – big scratches on the roller shutter and the tilted spotlight bear witness to this hair raising manoeuver – but the boys were glad to have reached their goal of the Day – MEDELLIN.



Day 25 – 9th February – Cartagena to Medellin