EPIC: Adventurous 81-year old Julia Albu has driven her Toyota on a 12 000km expedition from Cape Town to London. Picture: Nick Williams
Cape Town - Traffic jams on the commute home are frustrating at the best of times, but spare a thought from behind the wheel for 81-year-old Capetonian Julia Albu, who began her 12 000km return journey from London to Cape Town last week.

The thrill-seeking granny rubbished the stereotypes surrounding her age last year, opting to drive her 20-year-old Toyota Corolla, affectionately known as “Tracy”, from her home in the Western Cape to her daughter’s house in London.

This epic adventure has seen Julia and her trusty vehicular companion travel through 11 African nations and a further nine European countries.

After a brief respite in London and a routine check-up for Tracy, the pair are on the road again and cruising home. During an interview in a London Toyota dealership, Julia discussed her motivation, commenting that a well-known figure’s excessive spending on cars for his wife was the inspiration she needed.

“I was incensed about this expense and thought it was ridiculous.”

After countless memorable experiences, London came calling last month, one year after pulling out of her Cape Town driveway.

Julia, who is spreading the word of charity Shine Literacy during her trip, says that her beloved Toyota’s performance was never in doubt.

For more information on the adventure, visit Julia’s travel blog at https://www.myafricanconquest.com/blog or to donate to Shine Literacy, visit www.shineliteracy.org.za.

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Cape Argus