13 June 2005

We finally get a move on

Sunday began with sporadic rain showers. I got up, had a shower and went to look for a phone book. There was no Internet here and the desk had little ants all over it which I didn't want in my computer. I called the office and went to get a phone book as there was none in the room. I tracked down the local Auto store to get a fan belt and then called for a taxi. The landlady must have felt guilty about overcharging as she offered to drive me and Eric to the shop. We cancelled the taxi (just before he finally arrived!) and I bought two different fan belt size options.
Lana and I worked out how it went on and the car started. But it sounded pretty rough, and the splattered rubber of the old belt gave off occasional smoke.
But we started off anyway, going via the auto shop to return the excess belt. 2 minutes after getting back on to the I24, the engine made a very weird noise so we pulled back off and into a gas station. Opening the bonnet/hood we saw the top of the engine (shown here) but with the front cap and screw thingy way out of kilter.
A fellow called out and asked if it was overheating. I answered it was more than that and he came to look. He was a part time mechanic and offered to fix it so we could continue. After all we were only 2 hours from home.
Trusting to my guardian angel and a gut isntinct we agreed and drove to his place just around the corner. His folks were on the porch in the shade and other family friends gathered round with great Tennessee Southern accents adding their advice. The best option was to replace the top thingummy as it was "stuffed" (this is the appropriate Australian description of it's condition). His dad gave us a lift to the same auto shop and we purchased both the replacement thingummy and the air conditioning gas refill kit as our lovely cool gas had to be released in order to replace the thingummy. ($250)
After an hour and a half it was all fixed and running very smoothly, much better than before we left home.
So off we went on the last leg - on a very hot Sunday.

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