Friday, June 19, 2015

Emile Leray: Certified Badass

Let's say you were driving along one day, and your car broke down. Would you be able to fix it? Would you be able to hike to the nearest place and use their phone to call for help? Or would you flag down a passerby? But before you answer, let's specify that you were driving along one day in the Morroccan desert - one of the harshest climates on earth, and the nearest town (which might not even have a phone) is 20 miles away across burning desert. Emile Leray had that happen, and he said "fook zat", and just built a new vehicle from the parts of his old one.

The story took place in 1993, published in the NY Daily News in 2012, but is only recently making the rounds. Emile, an experienced trekker across the African continent, took stock of his situation. His car was unrepairable. He had enough supplies to last a few days. The nearest down was 20 miles away, which a 10 hour journey in the best conditions, but could take a few days if you're carrying supplies in the heat. So instead he went into survival mode, broke out the hack saw, and parted his Citroen 2CV to make a quasi-motorcycle a la Mad Max, then rode it to civilization.

Leray is now in his mid 40's, living in Northwest France (because that's where French people go to live when they're not pussies).

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