Distance is relative

Comments Off on Distance is relative

So, yesterday was an interesting day; I managed to haul myself out of bed early to go look at an EV. The guy had said it was probably only good for parts; but I never trust other people’s judgement in these issues – because often people can be a bit blinded by dirt and grot.

In this case though, he was probably right. It’s rather sad, apparently there were only 110ish of these little cars made:

Very sickly Enfield EV

This being a rather sad example. I reckon it’s had about 20 years of hard service followed by about 10 of sitting unloved in the corner of a council yard. Although the body is glass fibre and aluminium, the chassis is a box-section affair with a big plate of steel on top of it, and that has basically completely disintegrated. If I didn’t have 3 projects on the go (the minor, my pink ‘zed, and the odds and sods on Brick) plus the house then I’d be tempted, because I really think it’s a shame that it’s going to go for parts, but it is a big project. The body’d have to come off the floor, and then it’d need a new floor, new electrics, new batteries, the door, if it is salvagable would need an awful lot of work – it’s not like you can pick these things up down at your local dealer…

I rather like them though. They have a dinky charm.

Anyway, so that was a longish treck in the morning – not aided by Brick having a bit of a flat battery in the morning. I have been having this suspicion that the alternator isn’t *really* keeping up – I’ve had this faint feeling for a while. Things like the lights dimming at idle, and this faint but almost certain feeling that the starter was going slower each morning…

At any rate, it’s not charging effectively, which is another thing to look into. I was meant to be going to the parts day, but… well, I’ll get to that.

So after the enfield trip I decided I was going to pick up Brian’s birthday present. Great plan, except that saturday in Slough is a slow-traffic affair. Brick – having come off the motorway – was very hot. Traffic was fairly much stationary. We actually sat through two cycles of one set of lights without moving, and I started to get the feeling that the engine wasn’t entirely running well. Then he stalled, in a line of traffic outside Tesco. With superhuman, she-ra like strength I lept out (having discovered he wasn’t in a hurry to restart) and managed to push the car (using a run up) half onto the pavement, thus allowing people to get past. For once, I don’t think I even got honked at.

So we sat for a few minutes, I took the opportunity to reclean the rotor arm, and when the engine had cooled down a bit, it restarted. Still didn’t really idle, but with some effort I got us turned around and headed home. I suspect fuel vaporisation, which is annoying, ‘cos it’s not exactly *hot* at the moment, and I’m not quite sure what to do about that, except possibly knock up some sort of heat shield and change the layout of the fuel pipe.

Aaaanyway, so then I walked into town (far more healthy, anyway), got Brian’s present and promptly turned round and walked back. It’s about 4 kms each way, and I’m not the fittest person on the planet (and also I do a fairly active job…), so after that I got home and was a bit tired. Having stripped the bed linen, put the laundry on I had a nap, this was also a cost cutting measure, because if I’m asleep I don’t need the heating on (alledgedly). I woke up freezing cold, and stuck the gas fire on… And then showered, dressed and headed to the strangest party.

This, obviously, involved walking back to town. And then taking the tube. I am never, ever taking the tube again when there’s engineering work on. I’d ‘budgeted’ about half an hour to get to Brian’s house – reckoning it’d really take 20. It took about 40 minutes to get there – especially when the only option for reaching the Northern line was the Hammersmith and City line, which for some reason decided not to stop at King’s Cross. When I was going the other way on the Northern Line they implied that there was no Hammersmith and City connection too… so I had to go past King’s Cross and down to Moorgate. There was a lot of standing around and no information being given to customers. Or at least, the information being given didn’t aid you in getting anywhere, it simply told you that there was no service on the Circle and District lines…

Anyway, I got to the party – but the tube situation meant that I had to leave early, which was a shame, because I had to leave at about the point I started to relax a bit. It has to be said that I did have a good time, but it was weird. Really weird. These are people I’ve not seen for 8 years, and I last saw them during a period in which I was not in the best state of mind.

But the weird thing is that they really have just become older versions of themselves. Personality wise, they were pretty much the way I remember them. But they look…well, like they’re coming up on thirty. I forget that I’m nearly thirty, and most of my friends either are, or look younger than they are. So seeing this group of friends who are the same age as me, and don’t look old per-se, but definately look their age, and are all doing the same scarily responsible things as me (house ownership, pensions and jobs); many of whom are married, or getting married…. It was quite scary. And they’ve all kept in touch – which is quite weird – since they were school friends. Nice, but uncommon, I’d say. Anyway, it gave me this feeling like I’d teleported 8 years into the future. There were these grown up people, and here I am feeling completely out of my depth.

At any rate, I had a good time, and I’ll probably see them again.

It’s funny to think of them, writing for NME (I think), teaching and… in positions of responsibility.

Anyway, I headed home, and had a bit of a nightmare with the tube, missing my connecting train by a good 20 minutes (despite leaving nearly an hour to get back to the station), but thankfully Kathryn was awake, so I had someone to make the journey back a bit more pleasant.

When I got back (sorry, rambly post), I did try and persuade a cab driver to take me ‘most’ of the way back, but he declared that his meter starts running at a fiver (it normally costs 6 quid back to my street, so I’m slightly surprised by that (whatever time I’ve come back, it’s cost 6 quid)), so I walked, tempting myself with the thought of a kebab… Not that I was hungry, I’ve just not had one for so long I thought it’d be nice.

So I wandered back, amazingly I’ve discovered the power of ‘layers’ and thus wasn’t cold. Oh, and thermal teeshirts from Alaska and Canada :-) And the stars were so pretty last night. It was a cold night – because the sky was completely clear, and even through the light pollution, I could see loads of stars. And then, as a special treat, as I approached my local kebab van (which, incidentally shut while I was looking at this), two groups of birds set forth each forming a beautiful V in the sky, the light from the earth reflecting off their light feathers producing a beautiful spectacle. The people on the other side of the road seemed to think I was a bit odd, as I just came to a stop and stared at the sky…

…It was just supremely beautiful, and completely unexpected.

Of course, when I got home I had to make the bed (*doh*) and I finally fell into bed and slept ’til 7 (thanks body), with some encouragement I managed to make it through to 1045 though, so now I’m pondering the rest of my day. I need to do some cleaning, and if I can get some reorganisation done in bedroom two I should be able to prep the bathroom for builders…. Not that I’ve got any yet. Lucky’s not brought back the spare copy of the plans, so I may have to photocopy mine, or somesuch, to give to the next lot of builders. Bloody sod people.

I hate builders. Did I mention that?


Kate's a human mostly built out of spite and overcoming transphobia-racism-and-other-bullshit. Although increasingly right-wing bigots would say otherwise. So she's either a human or a lizard in disguise sent to destroy all of humanity. Either way, it's all good.