Trip Start May 23, 2008
26Trip End Jun 22, 2008
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It was Sharon's turn to drive,
After a late lunch stop at which we were treated to a great thunder and lightning show, I took over the wheel, but only drove for about an hour before checking to see that the exhaust, which was getting ever louder, was actually still attached! We couldn't find a mechanic in the first town we drove through, so continued on to Hinghanghat, where one of the first stores we came to was a workshop, and the mechanics beckoned us in - clearly they had heard us coming!!
It was a great place to stop for a break, the whole family, mum, dad, three sons and a daughter, came out to chat to us, pulled up plastic garden chairs and were soon offering cups of chai. They took the exhaust off (again) and carried out all sorts of work on her, including oiling the accelerator, brake and clutch, before taking her on a quick test drive (with us still sitting on the chairs but ALL our possessions in the back of Dolly) round the streets of town, with one of their own choice of CDs blaring out the stereo. It must have looked a sight!
We stopped at the first lodge we came to and Sharon popped out to check it out. Meanwhile, someone was asking me what we were doing, I explained that we were looking for somewhere to stay. He said there was somewhere better round the corner. Sharon returned saying it was 'ok' so when I mentioned another place, she very quickly suggested we try it. We followed the guy in his car round to another lodge, where the owner/manager appeared to be out for his dinner. I was exhausted by this time and just wanting to lie down, so wasn't really interested in the guy "humbly suggesting" to us that 10km back was a much better lodge. I said rather bluntly that we couldn't go back, only forwards and as it was dark, we really didn't want to drive, despite his very kind offer of either driving us there or following behind us. Finally, before the owner of the lodge returned, he took us along another street, to where he worked, as a manager in a textile factory, and promptly disappeared inside. About ten minutes later, he brought out the managing director to meet us.
It's amazing, earlier in the day, I commented that really nothing much had happened that day. Little did I know we would enjoy the company of the family of mechanics and end up sleeping in local factory accommodation. I really NEVER know what will happen next!!