Monthly Archives: April 2010

Untimely Eruptions

I am staggered by the reactions of some people to the Icelandic volcano affair.

As a professional traveller and tourist I never go anywhere without thinking about, and planning for, unforeseen issues that could affect my trip – from having my rail ticket from Moscow to Krakow stolen (back in the communist days) and having to buy another through black market channels with the US dollars I had strapped under my shirt, to dealing with poilitcal upheavals in central African states and knowing how to use the Consular system for help and advice.

The hysterically weeping people on the TV news saying how much they hated a few days extra stuck in a  hotel or waiting in an airport because of the disruption to their flights and those demanding compensation should frankly never be allowed to travel.

A volcano is an act of nature – I remember the BA 747 on its way to New Zealand in 1982 that lost power in all four engines after flying through a cloud of volcanic ash – personally I would have rather spent six days in an airport waiting lounge than risk that happening to my flight. And the airlines being forced to pay passengers hotel and food bills is also unfair – it wasn’t their fault!

If people want to travel, they need to be aware that these things happen.

Travelling is an adventure. It’s exciting. It’s educational. It’s often frustrating and surprising. But it is also a very great privilege.

Bit on the front, bit on the back, bit on the side….

Spent a happy four days on the farm fettling bits to bolt back on.

I used the parts washer to clean up the oil filters and fitted those (although I’ve used the brackets from the wrong car so will have to change those next time.

oil cooler

I rubbed down the scabby old fuel filler flaps – which took ages, and primed them ready to paint.

fuel flaps

I fitted the cut-out switch in the boot and the cable from the battery to starter motor.

Cut out switch

And then plunged headlong intio the horror that was the wiring loom.

oh dear

The only way I could untangle it all was to separate it into branches and wrap each branch up with a label identifying which part of the car it fed. Many of the sticky labels we had put on during the dismantling process had come off, so working out which wires feed which lights is going to be fun!

bagged and tagged

The back of the car is pretty well done now, and i have a choice. I can either put the orignal back end on, with the three light cluster, or i can put the slightly later back end on from the othe car. This has the four light cluster which I prefer the look of.

Essentially I am building ROJ from the ground up. It was a modified car before, and many of the parts I am using are from other cars anyway – so rather than building it as it came from the factory, I am taking a leaf out of the Sultan of Brunei’s book, and building the car to my specifications.

The last few hours on Easter Monday I spent in the barn rubbing down the fourlight rear end which I will fit next month.