My Mercedes is Not for Sale: From Amsterdam to Ouagadougou...An Auto-Misadventure Across the Sahara

by Jeroen van Bergeijk | Travel |
ISBN: 9780767928694 Global Overview for this book
Registered by rootmartin of Wellesley, Massachusetts USA on 2/2/2009
Buy from one of these Booksellers: | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon DE | Amazon FR | Amazon IT |
This book is in the wild! This Book is Currently in the Wild!
5 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by rootmartin from Wellesley, Massachusetts USA on Monday, February 02, 2009
My Mercedes Is Not for Sale is a rollicking, witty and insightful tale of an innocent abroad which captures the high-spirited adventure of a young journalist and paints a vivid portrait of West Africa through a surprise-filled journey into its thriving car cult. It has all the wit and charm of John Mole s bestselling Its All Greek to Me! and Peter Allison s Don t Run, Whatever You Do and the philosophical underpinnings of Robert Pirsig s Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance Dutch journalist Jeroen van Bergeijk came up with what seemed like a great scheme for making a quick profit: buy an old banger in Amsterdam and resell it in the Third World, where a market for clapped-out cars still thrives. His chariot of choice is a rusty 1988 Mercedes 190D with 140,000 miles on the clock; his route takes him from Holland through Morocco, across the Sahara, and into some of the least trodden parts of Africa. Van Bergeijk finds himself facing a driving challenge akin to a Dakar Road Rally but encounters obstacles never dreamed of by race-car drivers: active minefields, occasional banditry mostly by the border guards and a teenaged, chain-smoking desert guide with a fondness for Tupac lyrics. Food and water are scarce, sandstorms are frequent, and all he has to patch up his many car breakdowns thousands of miles from civilization is a bar of soap, some duct tape, and a pair of women's tights. Then there's the coup he lived through. My Mercedes Is Not for Sale captures more than the adventure it vividly portrays the impact of globalization on Africa through an adventurous and sometimes dangerous journey into its thriving car culture.

Journal Entry 2 by wingcandy-is-dandywing from Great Bardfield, Essex United Kingdom on Friday, September 25, 2009
Arrived safely. Looks good. Thank you.

Journal Entry 3 by wingcandy-is-dandywing at Braintree, Essex United Kingdom on Tuesday, October 11, 2011
An enjoyable and interesting read. A real adventure across Africa.

I found it interesting how the author 'filled' the book with a history of the car he had purchased to make his journey, how it was built plus interviews with former owners.

This is now off to therubycanary who won it in an Armchair Travel Bookswap on

Released 8 yrs ago (10/11/2011 UTC) at A non-bookcrosser, -- By post or by hand/ in person -- United Kingdom


Mailed to therubycanary.

Journal Entry 5 by therubycanary at Nashville, Tennessee USA on Tuesday, November 08, 2011
Great! This looks like a quick, fun read.

Journal Entry 6 by therubycanary at Portland, Maine USA on Tuesday, July 24, 2012
I mostly read this in quick snipets at work in between taking phone calls. It was a great little adventure to have while sitting in a basement making phone calls interviewing people regarding their medicaid.

What was really nice was that although the author had some touch and go moments, he chose not to develop the disdainful, condescending attitude that a lot of his fellow travelers felt toward the locals.

Journal Entry 7 by wingAzukiwing at Miami, Florida USA on Sunday, August 12, 2012
Always love a good travelogue. Thanks for sharing!! I think I got this in the travelogue swap.

Journal Entry 8 by wingAzukiwing at Miami, Florida USA on Thursday, July 19, 2018
Quite an interesting tale of his travel across Africa. I like the author's personality, how he tries to be fair minded and doesn't go into the superior-white-man mode. Also enjoy how he tries to track down the previous owners of his Mercedes. I admit while I like my car, I don't take such a romantic view of it.

Journal Entry 9 by wingAzukiwing at Miami, Florida USA on Wednesday, August 08, 2018
I had it set aside for the travel book box, but then found out that it is actually on my birthday partner's wishlist. So, to a lovely birthday girl it goes!

Happy Birthday and hope you enjoy the book!

Journal Entry 10 by wingnimrodielwing at Evanston, Illinois USA on Sunday, August 26, 2018
I added this to my wishlist a loooong time ago during an armchair travel swap game. Thanks so much for sharing it.

Journal Entry 11 by wingnimrodielwing at Evanston, Illinois USA on Monday, October 28, 2019
I enjoyed this alot more than I thought I would when reading the first couple of chapters. As the travels described in this book occured in 2005, I occasionally found myself wondering what might be different if the trip was done currently. Like previous readers I did enjoy how open minded the author was towards the people he encountered during his travels.

Released 1 mo ago (11/8/2019 UTC) at Little Free Library # 77880 - 1315 Church Street in Evanston, Illinois USA


Left in the little free library.

Are you sure you want to delete this item? It cannot be undone.