Thursday, December 15, 2011

Frankenfurter gets replaced by Arnold The Second.

Well, Frankenfurter has hit the end of the road for us.

He has served his purpose and he served us well.

We took him in for a major service and the techies there said that he was still in good nick, but that a few parts were coming up for replacement.*

We have done 15000 kilo’s in him in seven months and with winter here the poor dude was standing in our hired space freezing his butt off.

This parking space costs us 100 EU per month and our garage that we use to store things here also costs us one hundred smakeroo’s. Problem was that Frankenfurter was to big for the shop garage. So we needed a car that fits into the garage and cancel the hired parking space.

To high, too wide, too macho. ( OK, maybe I exaggerate with the macho bit), but he is fracking difficult to drive in town traffic. His turning circle is such that you do a three hundred point U turn, making you look like you just bought your license from the local internet shop and making a complete ass of yourself in front of the locals……..

I do not like seeing people laugh every time I make a U turn.

So I disassembled the bed box and and all the other  camping  paraphernalia I had built into him last Sunday.

Then Anne and I got up at 5 am on Monday and climbed in Frankenfurter and did a trip to first Antwerp, where we organized further financing for the shop, and then we went on to Eindhoven, where we originally bought the dude.

It is dark until frikkin 8:30 and it was pissing cats and dogs and it was 4 degrees with wind. I kept on thinking that my ancestors that wandered out of Africa must have been fucking insane.

I mean dude, you walking from a warm sunny continent to a ice cold one where it pisses all the time---what’s with you?

Don’t you realize that at first snow is cute, fluffy white stuff and after a week it is only cold white shit??---- Sheeez.

Anyway, we wanted another ‘bedryfs auto’ which is a commercial vehicle in Dutch. Reason is that the taxes are lower and generally they also come in at a lower price.

 

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I settled on a straight trade for a Renault Mezane  2008 model. Really neat condition, it is a station wagon and because it is deep blue ( businesses want white—easier to paint logo’s and brand names on) and has only two seats, ( rules out Fred and the family) so no one really wants a car like this.

For an extra 700 EU it came with a full service, road worthy and a new cam belt and water pump. A new cam belt is important, because if it breaks, your motor is completely trashed. ( been there, done that)

And a three month warranty as well.---- Schweet baby, schweet.

Antwerp had made us later than we wanted to be, so the garage could not complete all the work that day, so we drove back. In the fracking dark, because it gets dark at 5 here now.

We decided Wednesday would be better to pick up the car and so we drove back to Eindhoven and arrived at ten in the morning. Need I say that it was dark, cold and piss wet?  No?  OK. I won’t…….

But, as with typical European efficiency, all was ready wet and waiting. In NL buying a new car is simple. You sign the papers and pays your money and that’s it. You go.

No schlepping to a roadworthy center and no paying of bribes. No official telling you he is hungry and wants lunch.

Wonderful, this efficiency mixed with empathy and honesty.

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Also, the back has place to doss, if you say on a hard core birding trip to Spain. Not the best, but workable. So that option remains open, which is an avenue that no birder wants to be without.

His name is Arnold, because he sort of got this Arnold look. Sort of strong, but not really, just like the real Arnold in California is these days.

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And since this post is about cars, such a sweet middle aged Merc parked outside the shop. In pristine condition.

IMG_7711I once had a friend who, without thinking, put two stray cats that he had caught into a cardboard box and closed the lid----for a few seconds.

The warfare inside was instantaneous, loud and potentially lethal.

This would probably happen again if the owner of this van got hold of the dumb fuckwit ‘artist’ that did this, me thinks.

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Look, I believe in doing neat work, but this is over the top. Chasing the cement between bricks?  Ever heard of a wireless switch?.

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