Today started very, very early. 8:30am alarms are not welcome when you normally finish work at 10pm-midnight. However, the level of excitement was such that it didn't really matter. Mike had already gone to collect the truck before I woke up and got delayed on his return by an accident (not involving him, thankfully) on the A66 so that delayed us setting off by an hour. It got a little interesting too because it just so happened that today, Dollywobbler was collecting his Daewoo Matiz so an impromptu gathering happened at Dean's place.
There were some sights on the very boring drive from Stockton to Coventry. A spectacular hand-made number plate.
A plain-bumper Ford Ka. I was suprised how many Kas of this shape were bumbling about on our way in.
As we neared the destination we went past a Volvo 240 estate, a Triumph 2000 on slotmags and sporting plenty of primer (it looked amazing), a SAAB 9000, and a Fiat 127. I failed to photograph any of these things because I wasn't quick enough with the camera. I did, however, grab snaps of the tidy BMW, the ruined Reliant and the rather brilliant BMW bike and sidecar within spitting distance of Dean's. As is often the case on these adventures, the old rammel density increased as we approached the destination.
I then utterly failed to get any pictures. Mr Dollywobbler was there with Purple Myrtle looking resplendent (the Matiz, that is, Dollywobbler merely looked tidy by comparison), as was Dean, and Bleriot the BX. Discussions were had, the truck lined up, DW took video of us all being Men and Doing Things, in which I'm sure we'll at least look like amateurs, possibly even look like we know what we're doing. Bleriot was kind enough to dump the sods of grass he'd scooped up into the middle of the road before getting on board the truck. There was a slight clearance issue at the apex of the bed, but with a bit of a shove of engine and a small bang, all was fine. Dean was brave enough to pilot Bleriot up onto the truck since I wasn't that confident I could do it and of all of us, he was perhaps the most competent. He certainly made it look like he knew what he was doing.
Before I got chance to get a snapshot of anything, Dollywobbler was zooming off and Dean ushered us indoors for beverages, paperwork (where I was embarrassingly incompetent at using a smart phone), and then on to see the third white BX in the form of his rather tasty St Tropez edition. Also got a quick look at the XM estate and felt very much like I'd missed out on what looked like an excellent vehicle, definitely one that's with the right person.
We eventually remembered to do the money thing, and then it was off for a rummage in the spares stash which unearthed three spare wheel trims, which will be a useful addition to my scant spares selection. All too soon it was time to head home, it would have been nice to stay longer, Dean is a lovely bloke, excellent seller, made me feel very guilty taking Bleriot away.
On our way home we found a rare stretch of sodium lights on the motorway and Mike and I sighed wistfully that soon these too will be destroyed in favour of the glaring LED horrors.
Eventually, we stopped for something to eat and check the straps were all good, which they were. Obligatory snapshots taken.
As we got nearer home, the breaks became more frequent. The Vauxhall we'd hired had the strangest seats that were both comfortable, and had the unique ability to send just your bottom to sleep, rendering it one of the most uncomfortable things we'd been in. That combined with the length of the day meant plenty of coffee breaks, even more necessary with the traffic and sporadic roadworks, the seemingly hundreds of broken down vehicles and even a crash bad enough to close one lane. Even as a passenger it was a tiring journey home.
Once at the unit, it was nice to get out of the truck and do something else. Getting the BX on the truck was fairly straightforward, but getting off again wasn't. The bit of car that had got a little stuck going on, was a lot stuck when we tried to get off. Two planks of wood under the back wheels sorted this and we cleared the apex of the bed nicely. I also nearly ran Mike over because even being as quick as I could on the handbrake, and as careful as I could with the clutch to creep the car back, momentum took hold and the BX trundled off without any further drama.
First important job was to check the dashboard shelf was suitable for my little mascot.
I've missed this view in particular.
I've very much missed this particular space too. It's sooooooooooo comfortable. So nice.
I'm so happy. I'm so happy this was such a painless purchase, and that I got to meet shiters again, and have a look around some more Citroens, and it was just a really neat day out. I also now have a BX and that makes me happiest of all. It's a really, really good BX too from what I've seen of it. There's very little to do, it's clean inside and out and really just needs a bit of spit and polish. The clutch is NICE, which is really rare when I buy a car. It feels comfortable and familiar and I feel very, very fortunate to be back behind the wheel of a BX. So a big thank you to Dean for not changing his mind, and for Mike in agreeing to another of my ridiculous car buying escapades, and to 500tops for his help in facilitating this whole deal. You've all made me a very happy person indeed.