During my visit to Kenya earlier this year, we called in to say jambo to old friends Tim and Wendy Davis.
Nothing had changed, as we drove through the gates of their Langata property, and climbed the familiar steps to their house. We exchanged family news while settling down to a cup of coffee on the veranda overlooking the sparse lawn.
Tim’s labour of love had come to fruition. His East African Safari Scrap Book, commemorating fifty years of competition, was published. I wanted to buy a copy for my brother-in-law, Robin Hillyar, who won this prestigious event with his friend Jock Aird way back in the mists of time.
Tim produced a copy of the coffee-table sized book and signed it, leaving a thoughtful message for Robin. It is a colourful presentation with snippets of interest on every double page, representing one year. Tim had been responsible for the news and press during the rally for many years, and was able to draw on his vast store of information.
Controversies are recorded, amusing incidents revealed, and facts faithfully reported. Drivers have been happy to come forward to offer anecdotes and correct perceived misconceptions before the book finally went to press. There are always several viewpoints to an event, and Tim has been careful to represent the truth as near as he possibly could.
After coffee, he led us into the house and showed us his pride and joy: a glass cabinet filled with carefully prepared memorabilia. Each of the fifty years has a separate section. The display contains models of the Safari start/finish ramp for every year, complete with miniatures of the winning cars. It was a privilege to be photographed with him beside it.
Tim’s dream is for the whole cabinet eventually to become a museum piece.