My African Conquest is a funny, feel-good story about adventuring through life – and never acting your age.
‘Next year I’m going to be 80 years old. My car will be 20 years old. Together we’ll be 100. We’re going to drive to London.’
‘And what route are you going to take?’
‘I have no idea. I think I’ll keep to the right.’
When 80-year old Julia Albu calls in to her favourite radio show with a zany, half-baked idea, she has no idea that it will lead her to the adventure of a lifetime.
From helping push a 30-year-old Toyota bakkie up a precipitous mountain pass in Malawi to being ‘adopted’ by the riotous ex-pat South African community in Dar es Salaam and being fed mildly hallucinogenic ‘herbs’ by her Ethiopian driver-guide, nothing deterred 80-year-old Julia Albu from her quest to drive through Africa from the Cape to Cairo.
She and her 20-year-old Toyota Conquest, Tracy – a personality in her own right – travelled through 10 African countries, from South Africa to Egypt (and beyond). Julia was accompanied by a series of companions who added texture to her travels: three of her four grown-up children, her son-in-law, and at least one person who began as a complete stranger and ended up as a friend for life.
Reminiscing about her long and interesting life along the way, and maintaining a bright and upbeat outlook regardless of the circumstances, Julia proves that you’re never too old to tackle that bucket list.
About the author
Julia Albu is an adventurer with a difference – she’s an octogenarian. At an age when most people are happy to put up their feet, Julia drove south to north across Africa in her trusty Toyota Conquest she named Tracy. Before this madcap adventure, Julia was involved in marketing and public relations.