In the build up to Rugby World Cup 2015 in London, official logistics sponsor, DHL Express, set out on a grand and ambitious journey to pass a single rugby ball from hand to hand through 45 countries in 45 weeks. The ‘Africa as One’ expedition team departed Cape Town in three Land Rover Discovery vehicles and covered more than 50 000km, delivering the concept of rugby to Africa, and several other social responsibility projects. We spoke to ‘Africa as One’ project leader, Louise Otter about living life on the African road, and the heart-warming encounters along the way.

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On a rainy day in Newlands, Cape Town, I stepped into the office of the DHL ‘Africa As One’ project leader, Louise Otter. Describing the state of her office, the only words that jump to mind were ‘chaos,’ and ‘mayhem’. “Did you get robbed?” I asked with real sincerity in my voice. “No, silly, she says. “This is what I was living with for the past year. It is everything from our cars.”

The mess made it difficult to move around the office. I moved a high-lift jack aside and found an empty spot on a well-hidden couch in the corner. Vehicle parts, tents, tools, recovery gear, tyres, sleeping bags, rugby balls, clothes, travel documents and many more lay strewn out across the entire office.

Screen Shot 2016-01-19 at 9.26.11 AMIt seems my timing was perfect. After more than 300 days of travelling through Africa, Louise and her DHL Africa As One expedition team had just returned from the Rugby World Cup – the planned culmination of their expedition. She had just unloaded their gear from their vehicle, still layered in thick African dust….

Read the full story in Issue#18 of Land Rover AFRICA Magazine.