We arrived at SMC in Newark full of trepidation & excitement at picking up our new wag. We were not to be disappointed. SMC were excellent in every respect. All of the pre-delivery jobs had been carried out to a high standard. The 'van was spick & span and many people have commented since what good condition it is in & cannot believe that it is 7 years old.
With 17000miles on the clock and a 313CDi Merc engine - it is hardly run-in & goes like sh*t off a shovel!!
We were shown round the van and every working part demonstrated & we took notes to remind us later. This took a full 2 hours. Nothing was too much trouble. ( I know they made their profit - but we were happy with the price as we had shopped around).
Next hob was driving it to our storage area. Luckily Mrs E has a friend with an area at the back of her house where she stores her 'van - so she had agreed to let us keep ours there. Power & water available & secure:thumb:.
So we drove the 20 odd miles without incident - (almost took out an overhanging traffic light) and parked up. We spent the rest of the day going over the wag & familiarising ourselves with the working parts. Great fun. Over the next few weeks we loaded up with food, kitchenware, toiletries etc etc & also made sure that the awning worked. That was a bit of a nightmare but we got there in the end - good old Fiamma:Sad:
We then decided that it was time to take her out for a drive & then to book some weekends away to train ourselves up. We plan to go full time in Mar 09 so we needed to ensure that the wag was up to it - and also that we knew what we were doing.
We've been to Rutland Water, Skeggie, West Runton, Billing, Doncaster, Skipsea, Oxford & Wetherby. Met loads of nice people, been on a couple of rallies, stayed at CC sites, a CL, a CS & a big commercial site. Also tested out the solar panel for a weekend with no problems. We can now almost reckon we can call ourselves properly trained up.
We have put the wag to bed this week till we come back from Cyprus in January & we will give her a brief run out a couple of times before we set off on Mar 3rd.
We need to get her serviced & MOT'd in April, so we will get some extras fitted then ( Gaslow system, a front blind & a TV aerial). Then with any luck we'll be ready to cross the channel on May 6th heading for the Garda meet with fellow funsters.
What about our house?. We have a good friend living in it & paying all the bills & so we dont have to store all our kit and have access at any time. So that takes care of that.
Next blog entry - in the Spring from Norwich.
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