*I went for this event last year, and it was embargoed until I could publish the interview for our February issue. Then I kind of lost the mood to write and it just laid there in my drafts section for months. But here we are.
Last November, I was invited as part of a Mercedes Benz media event, dubbed Hungry for Adventure. It was a collaboration with South African-born Swiss adventurer Mike Horn, who was in Malaysia with his seafaring vessel, the Pangaea, which boasts a special engine made for him by Mercedes Benz (They also sponsor his G-Wagon offroad vehicles, which he takes on his adventures).
Prior to the event, I had never heard of Mike Horn. By the end of it, I was left wondering why the hell I had not. The man is a legend. I was truly awed by his spirit, the journeys he has been on, and how inspirational he is.
Our group congregated at EX8 in Subang Jaya, where we were each given a Mercedes Benz Coupe to test drive all the way to Port Dickson omg.
Most of the media were placed in pairs ie one driver + navigator, but I was somehow the odd one out and had a car all to myself. Thinking it would be just like any other car, I was in for a surprise because most of the controls were on the opposite side ie signal on the left, gear change on the right. Which resulted in a lot of confusion because I had no navigator and basically had to use Waze + try to figure out the controls + drive at the same time.
The vehicle lacks the usual handbrake/gear shift box that normal cars have next to the passenger seat. Instead, the handbrake is a lever that you pull on the right side, and the gear change mechanisms are on the steering wheel.
It was quite intimidating to drive such an expensive car, and I worried all the way until we got onto the highway, where there were less cars and just a straight road from start to finish. That being said, you can really feel the difference in terms of comfort, stability, power, speed, everything. Ah, well, maybe I can afford this in another life lol.
We arrived at Avillion Admiral Cove in Port Dickson an hour later. Horn was waiting for us onboard the Pangaea, his yacht which has traversed the world and where he and his crew spend weeks, sometimes months on end, at sea. The boat couldn’t dock at the marina, so we had to take a smaller vessel out. It started to rain and the bumpy sea ride didn’t help with my seasickness.
Approaching Pangaea. This boat has been with Horn all the way to Antarctica, where in February 2017, he became the first person in the world to complete a solo journey across the continent, covering 5,000km over a span of 57 days.
The man himself, Mike Horn. Tall and handsome, this rugged adventurer is in peak physical condition despite being in his 50s. He has traveled the world since he was in his 20s and seen things most of us have only dreamed of, but is remarkably down-to-earth and friendly. He took us on a tour of his impressive ship, which was like a trailer equipped with everything – kitchenette, toilets, rooms, showers, even a conference room!
I really wanted to stay because the yacht was going out to sea for an hour, but the seasickness caught up with me and I threw up three times before calling it quits. Followed a group of other media, who like me, had no sea legs, back to the marina in the small boat we came in and waited for the rest of them to return lol.
Horn gave a talk that night about his experiences and man, can he really tell stories. It was so inspirational to listen to him relate about his adventures, the dangerous situations he has faced, the seemingly insurmountable odds, and how he overcame them. After hearing his stories, I was left feeling like my life is super vanilla, and that I need to go out there and do something more. Horn is a man that not only goes around saying “Live your life” – he truly does it. I think many of us go through our entire lives without truly living, and what he’s essentially saying is that we should live it to the fullest – not necessarily in travel, but in anything that we wish to do.
A video of Horn attempting to climb K-2 in Pakistan. He showed us photos of his travels and I was stunned that there would be any place on earth that could be this beautiful.
To read my interview with Horn, click here.