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Old 12th September 2019, 12:43   #1
FLYING BANANA
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Cool Preparing for a wee trip..............

...................................... in Banana tomorrow up to London. Had no plans to travel up this side of Christmas but I have a special event to go to. Going to a surprise birthday party for a very special friend of mine, Steve. He emigrated out to Australia with his Mum, Dad, brother and sister over 60 years ago. He has been back only once, and that was for a funeral of his mother and father who were both killed in horrendous accident in Oz. His parents wish was to be buried back in the UK. Saw him then for only a few hours.

We’ve kept in touch over the years with Birthday and Xmas cards. We tried the web cam but I kept getting it wrong. Spoke on the phone at various times. He phoned me on the day I got married to Val, and phoned again when she passed away.

Both his daughters live and work here. And his brother and sister returned here.
Steve is divorced but has a new lady in his life.
In the same accident that killed his Mum and Dad Steve suffered serious injuries which paralysed him from the neck down, over the years he gradually got the feelings back in his lower body and eventually was able to walk again.
But he was warned that he may become paralysed again, and that has now happened. He is now confirmed to a wheel chair.

So been getting Banana ready for the trip up. Oil, water, tyres checked and the screen wash topped up. Tank of Banana juice put in.
Be staying at Michaels for a few days. Hoping to see my god daughter on Saturday morning, she lives up in Earls Colne near Colchester. Then drive back to go to the party in the evening.
Sunday morning will see us attending the Ugly Duckling breakfast meet.
Sunday afternoon we will be travelling over to Kent to see my friends. We need to finalise their trip to me in October, plus I need to pick up a spare bed.

Not sure quite what is happening Monday. Might get to see my niece, if she is not working. If not, I might try and get to see Steve again for a chat over memory lane. Or failing that then a day out with Michael.

The plan is to leave early tomorrow morning, by 7am. We will be travelling up via the A38-M5-M4-Car park and onto the A1.
So should you see something bright Yellow hurtling along at Warp Factor 3 don’t forget to give us a wave, toot on the hooter or flash those newly restored headlights.

I’ll keep the diary going as we have a fan club to keep informed.

Mileage reading 205,795
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Last edited by FLYING BANANA; 12th September 2019 at 14:33.. Reason: Mileage
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Old 12th September 2019, 12:55   #2
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Only London Bob! Your "wee trips" usually involve the opposite end of the country.
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Old 12th September 2019, 14:35   #3
FLYING BANANA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevestrat View Post
Only London Bob! Your "wee trips" usually involve the opposite end of the country.
We have a mega trip planned for next year that will takes us across two countries, England & Scotland. Might get to meet you at some point.
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Old 12th September 2019, 15:46   #4
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Safe trip Bob, have a pleasant one 👍
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Old 12th September 2019, 16:16   #5
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Have a good trip, hopefully traffic will be kind to you
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Old 12th September 2019, 22:23   #6
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Keep up the stories Bob, and hope you have a good time.
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Old 13th September 2019, 12:39   #7
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Cool 270 miles in.......................

......................................... 5 hours flat with one stop at Membury. Banana performed her usual sweet self. We got a wave, think it was a wave from one of those large BMW X5’s, ones with the chequered pattern and blue disco lights on the roof. They slowed as they went past and the passenger waved and smiled.

We stopped at the Shell garage at Mill Hill and topped up the tank. The digital readout said 44.1mpg but I worked it out to 39.7mpg.
Around to Michaels to find him in a flap, lost his parking space outside the house. So he was parked up the road. I reversed onto the drive, which is now minus the tall grass. Looks a lot different now the garden has been cleared.

Off to meet a mate for a beer in Barkingside this afternoon, Michael is tagging along as well.
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Old 14th September 2019, 23:49   #8
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Cool Disaster has struck this evening......................

....................................... resulting in me having to wait over 3 hours for breakdown to come out to a stricken Banana. Cold, tired and totally stressed by the time recovery got to us. Resulting me missing the surprise birthday party. Annoyed? Who me? So that’s all this weekends plans scuppered.

We had been out yesterday to Barkingside and met up with my old mate Bob for a beer or two. Home to a lovely meal cooked by Michael. Really looking forward to be seeing my god daughter today, and the bonus being was her god mother was going as well, my friend Emma.
Collected Emma at 11am and off we went to Earls Colne. Banana running ok, but the gear changing was starting to get difficult to operate. But after awhile she seemed to be ok.

Got to Earls Colne OK and parked Banana up. My god daughter, Kirra, was waiting for me. Got a lovely hug and kiss from her, she was taken back a bit to see Emma with me. But I’ll not go there for now.
Kirra’s brother Dominic was waiting in the garden with the dog, a Beagle called Peppa. A right live wire she turned out to be.
Emma had taken stickers and sweets for the kids. I also took sweets for the kids plus some beer for dad and a bunch of roses for Mum.

We spent a very lovely afternoon with them all in the garden. Plenty of chat and playing with the dog. I declined anything to eat, a bad move, as I was looking forward to the meal in the evening. Emma just had a sandwich. The time was rolling on and it was approaching our time to leave. Kirra wanted me to stay and got quite upset when I said I had to get back but I stayed a bit longer in the end.we had to play unicorns and princesses, guess which one I was.

We finally said our goodbyes and away we went. Banana was running ok and changing gear ok. We chatted on the way back.back down the A120 and onto the M11 we sailed, turned off onto the car park, traffic was running ok. Soon at the Holmes tunnel and onto the A10. The traffic was heavy, stop start. Now and again Banana seemed to stutter but kept going. Turned off into Emma’s road and again the car stuttered a bit. Dropped Emma off and said our goodbyes.
I got back onto the A10 towards the A406 at Cambridge Circus. Still running ok.

I kept thinking about the forthcoming evening, really looking forward to see my friend Steve’s face when he saw us all. We had our instructions for the evening, Steve would think he was in an ordinary restaurant but not in a function suite.
Turned off at Palmers Green ok and made my way towards Michaels via the back doubles. Still running ok till we turned into Russel Lane N20. Again she stuttered and started to mis-fire. Got just past the petrol station when the engine just died. No warning lights came on, the engine just died. Luckily iHad got across a cross roads and managed to coast into the side of the road.

She would turn over but not fire. All the lights were ok and went out whilst trying to start. Nothing happened.
Then started the breakdown saga started. I was annoyed that she had broke down but not too bothered as I was close to Michaels. Phoned breakdown and gave them all the details including the policy no. No it had expired back in August. No it hadn’t. Then I remembered I was now on the multi car policy. Finally I got through to the right department.

Recovery will text me a time that they will be with me. I had broke down at 18.45, breakdown would be with me by 19.57. Ok, hazards were on and the bonnet was open plus I was under a streetlight so easily seen. Then another text informing me the time was now put back till 20.37. I phoned Michaels and left a message, phoned Allen and again left a message. Then I phone Steve’s sister to let her know I was going to be late. Phoned Emma and said it was her fault, just to ease my nerves. Starting to get chilly, but I had my jumper with me.

20.37 came and went, no sign or message. Phoned the breakdown office again, very nice lady said to remain calm, no doubt she could hear the stress in my voice, and she would find out where the recovery truck was. Still on his way was the answer, stuck on the A406. Thanked her.
21.00 came and went. 21.25 and the recovery phoned me. Not to panic he said but I’ve been stuck in traffic. Me panicking? No but I was tired, hungry, needed a drink and a wee. Was annoyed at missing the party but was thankful we hadn’t broke down on the motorway.

Finally at 21.45 the van turned up, just a van. The mechanic explained that if he was unable to get me going then I would have to wait for a piggy back truck to collect me. I gave the keys to the mechanic and told him what had happened. Now the panic was hitting home, what would I do? Recovery back to Saltash this evening? Or just back to Michaels. My mind was all over the place.
Then a familiar sound as Banana burst into life. Ticked over but a bit lumpy with it. He plugged in the magic box.

Nothing wrong was the answer, then a couple of blips on the throttle and she died. Refused to start. He gave her a few minutes and she started again, this time the tick over was steady, blipped the throttle again and all ok. He tried pulling away in gear with the handbrake but she refused to stall. Stopped her and started her again All was fine. Turned off. And checked the leads under the bonnet, checked the coil packs, all were sparking. Everything that he checked was ok. The only fault the mechanic said he thought it might be was the crankshaft sensor playing up once the engine got hot. Now it was cold it was running ok.

Now I’m 270 miles from home. He suggested that we drive around to my brother in laws house. And let her cool down overnight. He phoned into the office and told them that he had got the car running but he, the mechanic, had advised me not to drive it any long distance. He suggested to the office that the car would need recovering back to Cornwall at some point.
So now I have to phone breakdown tomorrow to arrange for Banana to be recovered home.
I thanked the mechanic for his help, he said now go and sit down and relax for awhile. And with that he was gone.

So that’s how it lies at the moment. I’m no wiser what is wrong just glad to be back at Michaels.
Bless him he had a pint of beer waiting for me and a light dinner. I had gone too long without food and was starting to feel a bit lightheaded. Not wanting to be unwell I sat down and ate the food, and drank the beer.

So we’ll what tomorrow brings, now I must turn in. Very tired now.

Goodnight all and thanks for reading.
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Old 15th September 2019, 00:08   #9
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Just glad you are safe and (almost) sound. Have a good night's sleep - it will hopefully feel better in the morning.
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Old 15th September 2019, 00:30   #10
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What a worry for you Bob. Have a peaceful and restful night, wake up in the morning feeling recharged and ready for your next challenge
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