Van Conversion: Weeks 9 and 10

And were outta here!!! We are currently waiting in the local tyre shop to get a new car battery and then out onto the open road, the dusty highway.

The last two weeks have been full steam ahead with the final adjustments. The V5C arrived back at HQ far sooner than we had expected. We were happily munching on our Friday morning eggs when Postie arrived with the brown envelope of dreams, containing a very swiftly processed updated ‘Motorhome’ V5C. That was six days ago and tomorrow we will be sailing on the 09:00 ferry from Harwich to the Hook of Holland, Rotterdam. Who’d of thought!

A few friends have enquired about the window that featured in Week 1. After torrential downpours in May we were left with soggy cladding and realised the full extent of the leak. We had been waiting for a dry day for Roger to reinforce the silicon sealant around it, Harry has done it before but we wanted expert hands again to patch up our mistake. That night it poured with rain again but we thankfully awoke to a dry and watertight van! Only took us nine weeks to fix it…

Waiting for the V5C we set out at making the van a bit more homely. Harry’s mother Diana made some curtains, my sister Philly made some bench cushions, I made some bookshelves and Harry made a cupboard for the fridge and kitchen paraphernalia. We got far too over excited and moved all our stuff into the van, only for it all to be tipped out again for the MOT. There was a sizeable list of odd jobs and touch ups that kept us occupied for a week or so, along with what seemed like daily trips to Halfords to get spare parts and tool box top ups. Only now have I discovered the Home Sense loyalty card, much to my despair, as the award for the most loyal customer of the month certainly goes to me. Home Sense to me is what Ski Tyres and Halfords is for Harry, who was suitably chuffed with the six new Michelin Cross Climate Agylis tyres. As you probably know Transit vans are not 4×4, extremely useful for Mongolian terrain, but this was our next best option. We have two of the old tyres as back ups as well to go along with a large selection of Ford Transit spares and our ‘Owners Workshop Manual’, so wish us luck!

Once we had the V5C back we set up the insurance, booked an MOT and service, had the tyres fitted, and headed off to Lincolnshire for a test drive and to see Harry’s grandparents. We had done a few crash tests and emergency stops along Harry’s driveway, with various items rolling and spilling across the van and off the shelves that we have managed to fix up. From the test drive though we only found one annoying noise and I concluded Fenty X Pumas are not comfortable driving shoes. Stocked up with merangues and noodles from Granny Maxine and ham and Stilton from Auntie Julia, we headed home to spend our last couple of nights with our families.

It has been so wonderful to have such an extended period of time at home after the boat and me being in Italy and at uni before that, perhaps the longest stint at home since going to boarding school. It seems a shame to leave England at one of the nicest times of the year, you can’t beat an English summer day, but a new adventure is calling. Stay tuned.

 

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