By far the youngest member of the crew, I was born in 1992. I'm a 200Tdi Land Rover Defender 110 hardtop, and hail from Guildford, Surrey.  The furthest I’ve travelled so far is France.  I joined Mike and Sarah in July 2007 as expedition packhorse.  With many miles ahead of us and a lot of kit to carry I hope they’ll appreciate me. I have to admit that I do have expensive tastes but they’ve already polished me up and given me new shoes, which is a good start.

So why the name Mapenzi?  Meaning ‘romance’ in Swahili it has a ring to it and of course there’s an element of romance to the whole trip anyway.

Mike Marriott

…Michael to Mom and Dad.  I’m the oldest and should therefore really be respected as the leader of this outfit, though arguably I am the least grown up of the three. Originally from SA I’ve been in the UK since 1999 but still feel drawn to Africa. 

I’ve spent the past few years obsessing about this trip and struggle to pick what part I’m looking forward to most, though the open spaces and wildlife definitely rank up there.

Sarah and I haven’t assigned ourselves specific roles though most of the mechanical and technical details have fallen to me.  Paperwork is not something I do by choice.

Sarah Marriott

I guess this makes me the middle child?!  Also South African, I've been away for nearly 9 years - so this trip feels like going home in some ways.

Of course the African wildlife and scenery is a huge draw, but I also can’t wait to experience the mix of cultures, the vibrant markets and friendly people.  And, yes, I am dreading the thought that we won't have access to a decent bathroom for six whole months!

I’m chief spanner-holder, as well as visa-applier, map-reader and menu-planner.  Sounds suspiciously like those paperwork details have fallen to me!