Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Operation Destiny

it was a long time before we would be doing any serious travelling again with travelling being done mainly to work and back and adjusting my route to drop off friends or Chloe at school. My travel bug had in the meantime had her engine reconditioned twice and it was the strangest thing that in all the time I had driven Rose Bugg she had never given me as much trouble as she gave me in the last 5 months.

The source of the problems was a mystery but when her engine seized the second time it was almost a blessing and an opportunity to start over.

The trouble that sent me to Alice on my first long distance trip 9 months earlier was about to send me again. Trying to deal with this from the comfort of my office job was annoying if not impossible. When I returned to Cape Town it took the bank in the region of 6 weeks to let me know that since asking them for my deed back in October 2009 they have still not been able to find it and after 5 months of solidly searching their vaults they have concluded that it is lost.

I have learnt from my mistakes and realised that a week is not enough time to sort out a problem and confronting these tenants when I am clearly outnumbered is also a ridiculous strategy. But first things first. I need to get a new deed. This was not as easy as it sounded. I came up with a plan which included leaving my beloved Cape Town and moving onto temporary accommodation. Our destination was originally Bedford. But by the time I had packed, my belongings had been taken away and I Rose Bugg on her way, our new destination was a small little spot, off the map for most people called BoknesStrand near 120km's out of Port Elizabeth on the way to Port Alfred.

On the way up we stopped off at Grabouw where we got to visit with Gerard and Susan, always my favourite part of the journey. They have a beautiful spot and I only wish I had been able to spend more time in their company. They are both at the age when they can calmly tell you how it is and you can calmly accept that they are right.

This drive was different to the last time I took such a long trip in many ways... This time I had packed the bug to capacity. I had unpacked and repacked that poor little bug more times than I can count. In the end I managed to fit in all the bedding and all the clothes. The usual crew consisting of Chloe, Storm and Max and the 2 additional crew members, Patch, the cat in her cat box seated just behind me and then Needle the navigator, balanced on his perch in his cage on the front seat.

Patch struggled, she really did. she meowed frantically at times, twisting herself upside down in her cage. She wet herself and every once in a while she would reach through the cage bars and tear as much skin off my unsuspecting back as she could manage.

The strangest thing was that with every stop over we made Patch became more and more tame sleeping on a bed in Grabouw for the first time ever since she has come to live with us. Needle was in general high spirits happily snoozing on Jacqui's kitchen table in George as we all sat around it drinking tea and chatting. Jacqui's pooch Molly spent a good while trying to figure out how to get Needle uncaged and into her tummy. Though Needle didn't seem too worried that didn't stop me from moving the cage. Max of course is used to this kind of stuff and just enjoyed the ride.

When we arrived it was after a long drive through the Eastern Cape. The little town was very sweet and our house, though dusty and full of dead spiders was very neat and very elegantly furnished. We were able to unpack all of our things and move in very comfortably.

It took me a week or so to really recover from all the packing and the 3 days of driving and by the time we emerged from the house it was Operation Destiny all the way. This time is different, this time I have the law on my side. And I am GOING to do this is if it is the last thing I EVER do!!

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