I saw a sight last night I haven’t seen for what must be over 20-odd years. Driving down the road, I saw a small group of children dragging a home made bogey up a hill by the steering-string. I have to say, the sight of it really took me back to my childhood. And yes, deep down inside, I really wanted a shot of it.
Now, for those of you that are not familiar with the term ‘bogey’, I am referring to what we in the West of Scotland called a home made death-trap of a vehicle. Folks from other geographies may variously describe it as a ‘guider’, ‘trolley’, ‘kart’, ‘soap-box cart’, ‘mini-kart’, ‘box-car’ and probably many other terms.
The idea was simple, you made your bogey out of whatever pieces of scrap you could find, then you found the steepest hill closest to where you lived and you hurled yourself down said incline, atop your home made death-trap. Making it to the bottom of the hill was a triumph. Making it to the bottom uninjured was a miracle.
Some time ago, I used to do a significant amount of business travelling, less so now, but a post I saw elsewhere recently got me thinking about how organised I became while racking up large numbers of airmiles**
It’s generally not the glamorous lifestyle many people imagine. I rarely got much time to sightsee and my experience was more airport -> taxi -> meeting -> taxi -> hotel -> taxi -> airport. You have to be able to occupy yourself a lot while you wait for flights, but it does give you a rich seam of war-stories to draw upon in years to come.
So, in the style of so many things on the web these days, here’s a ‘Top 10’ of things that set you apart from the common-or-garden tourist.
After my recent spat on the M8 I had to get a new car. All that thinking and talking about cars got me thinking about how many cars I’ve had since I started driving and some of the stories that went with them all.
Can you remember all the cars you ever owned?
warning: nostalgia and petrol-head terms in the following post…
The first car I had was a Mk1 Ford Escort. It was silver with a purple roof when I got it (nice eh?) but I painted it black, with a brush. As the time, I reckoned it looked great, there were no brush strokes, it looked like a professional job… for a while, until the oil based paint got scuffed and started peeling off in strips.
The car itself was held together with cataloy and gun-gum but it was a learning experience and allowed me to hone my skills on rust removal, filling and sanding, oh yes the sanding.
Eventually I peeled all the paint off and resprayed it, with proper primer and black paint this time – it was sauce. Eventually sold it, when it failed its MOT, for £20. Well, we are talking the early eighties here, twenty quid was over 40 pints in the union bar.
Following a bit of an altercation on the M8 motorway last week, I had the joy of being issued with a courtesy car by my insurers.
I fully expected that I wouldn’t be getting temporary wheels of the standard I had been used to, but what transpired is just a bit beyond a joke. Well, clearly it is not beyond a joke since everyone is openly enjoying the fact I am having to drive the automotive equivalent of a roller-skate.
On my drive home last night, in the dark, pretty much on automatic pilot, I noticed I was following a truck with an unusual load. It was transporting a boat.
The Randan 2 wasn’t a huge boat, but big enough to require a flat-bed articulated lorry.
I’ve seen trucks carrying boats before, but never gave them a second glance. Being stuck behind one in the rain made me think of how out of place it really was up there, towering over me in my car.