Daily Archives: 10 December 2010

Back on the road

We drove back into SA from our campground north of the city, and found the Rover out in the lot. The truck was done. I’d probably skip this entry completely, if it wasn’t for Mac, but he deserves the appreciation that is coming.
The guys at British 4×4 Centre, did a great job at getting the truck into the shop. When I called them from Laredo, they thought they had the wheel cylinders, but in the end, they did not. They were not available in town, nor were the rebuild kits. Luckily, I had Mac’s number from when he flagged us down on the road, so we called him and he was convinced that he had them and he would run the parts by the shop when he was back in SA.

Then the strange part of the story comes into play.

I called the shop prior to renting the car, and was told by the head mechanic that he had talked to Mac and he didn’t have the parts either. They would order the parts from somewhere else and get us on the road as soon as they could. So we rented the car, and went back to the shop to get the camping gear out of the Rover.
I was digging my Bibler tent out of the tool box inside the Rover, when I heard Mac’s distinctive voice behind me. He was talking to Peter and had a box of parts in his hands. I climbed out of the back wondering what the heck was going on.
Mac was incredible. He had the correct wheel cylinders and refused to take any money for them. He also offered us a loaner vehicle, but I turned that down, mainly because I had already reserved one, but I’m also not very good at accepting the hospitality when I can not return the favor. Peter was not happy when I turned the loaner car down, and he vented his frustration at me thoroughly that evening.
Still, I was preoccupied at the time by the idea that the mechanic seemingly had completely lied to me about Mac & his parts and I could not think of any reason why, all things considered.
Mac had driven his 1965 Series IIa wagon to the shop, so I used that to try to distract the temper that was brewing over the misinformation. It was a beautiful rig, and both Peter & I enjoyed going over it.
A major thank you goes out to Mac and his incredible generousity. He was a tremedous help in getting us on the road sooner than I either me or the shop expected. Hopefully the readers will send some warm thoughts and energy Mac’s way, because the guy was phenominal.
The brakes are not as good as they were when we dropped the Rover off, leaky cylinders and all. They did not do a good job in bleeding them, but I get the feeling they just wanted us out of the shop. Between the misinformation & the spongy brakes, I do not have a great feeling about the 4×4 Centre.

The Campground

It’s a beautiful morning here in Texas. Temps in the thirties, but with calm, clear skies. We pulled in after dark, so I’m a bit surprised by how many campers are here. The place is near capacity and it looks like the campers intend to stay here a while.
There is an airstream parked across the way with a little fenced in yard. Behind the fence are three blue healer dogs. Next to the bathroom is another airstream that is decked out with Christmas decorations, including an inflatable Santa peaking out the door of an inflatable pull behind trailer.

I’ve gone for a hike this morning and packed up all my gear into the rental car. I’m getting a bit antsy to get back to SA. Peter is in the bathroom warming up. Sounds like he had a miserable night. He brought two lightweight sleeping bags instead of his one good zero degree bag, and he regrets that decision. I’m not sure what he’ll do if he still wants to camp out at high elevations.


They didn’t finish the Rover. No excuse for it not to be done, but I’ll expand on that later.
Found out the Rover is too old to get Mex. Auto insurance through AAA, but they did give me the name of a company that would do it in SA.
I rented a car from Enterprise, which was right down the street. Had some incredible Mexican food for lunch, then escaped the city a bit to camp.
Hopefully tomorrow we will be nearer the border.