Friday, 5 January 2007

2) Operation J-Garden + milk-floats

Operation J-Garden

When I got the 101 down to East Anglia from Sheffield I stored it in my mate, John's garage for a few months while I negotiated with neighbours to take it through their gardens and then park it on a spot of land next to my workshop, which I would rent from my next door neighbour. This was all necessary because I don't have road access to the workshop.

A day or so after we got it to John's, we wheeled it out to have a jolly good look at it and my girlfriend came over and steered it when we pushed it back in, which makes her the first member of my crew to take the controls...even if yours truly was the engine.

Negotiations were complete in June ('03) and by then John had made a rigid tow bar which bolted to the front axle so that he could tow me to my place behind his car.

While we were attaching the tow bar and tuning in our walkie talkies etc, along came two milk floats which I waved down. I told the milkmen about my float and they very kindly agreed to delay their deliveries and pose for some pictures.

I am only sorry that I didn't take more time lining the vans up, but I didn't want to push my luck. These guys were being generous enough with their time as it was. I did get them parked along the road with mine in the middle of the sandwich though.

After that we hitched the 101 behind John's Skoda, Carl (another teacher mate) and John leapt into the car and I got gingerly into the 101, stepping carefully over where the step ought to be and where the rear of the wheel arch was held on with a bungee and we were off. I kept in close contact with the tow-car by walkie-talkie....not that they took the blindest bit of notice of my pleas to slow down. It is terrifying doing any speed at all behind a car which is only about 6' in front of you when you don't have brakes...even if the tow is rigid! And it is very hairy going over speed bumps...with rusty bits falling off behind you.

We backed the 101 down my neighbour Paul's drive, across the assault course illustrated here and into the plot at the bottom of my next door neighbour's garden next to my workshop:

Through the fence, round the sapling

....and parked


Pit crew!

To see how much was left of the van when I got her home, click here

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