The Topless Beauty

Trip Start Oct 04, 2008
Trip End Nov 04, 2008

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Friday, September 26, 2008

It happened at last. After some fiddling and straining, her top was wrestled from her and carefully dropped to the ground. If you thought undoing a bra was difficult, you try removing the top of a double decker. You need a disk cutter and gloves for a start.
Jim started with the very back fibre glass section of roof, then moved on to the metal strutts and the aluminium roof. we had to carefully lower the pieces over the edge to protect the paintwork and Adam then tidied up the rough edges, but we have a topless bus !!! About bloody time too.
Having discussed it since, those dissenters who thought it would look ok with just the missing windows had to admit that the open top beer terrace does look like the mutt's nuts. It's going to be a fantastic place to drink berrs, or even Pimms, gin and tonic, etc. I'm still vaguely hoping that Rick will come up with that grape vine at the last moment.
The leaving do is now organised to some extent. The Black Dog, 8pm Thursday 2nd October. At 10pm, we pile on the bus and leave. The good news is that Eileen and Kev are joining us in Weymouth before we leave, so they'll do the full trip, rather than being collected in London.
I've lined up a skittles night at The Lugger for Monday. It might bring in another couple of hundred if we are lucky. It will partly make up for the complete lack of darts event, which has annoyed me greatly. A lack of effort from some parties, despite promises to the contrary.
The brake shoes have apparently arrived and Lucy has paid for them. I think our mechanic, Bill, is in for a few busy days. He has a full work load until Saturday, then he's got a bus to prepare in 5 days. The plus side of the darts event not happening is that Bill will be fit and sober for an extra day (I hope).
I had a 50 donation from a work colleague yesterday, completely out of the blue. I was well chuffed, great stuff. I really must get to the bank today to pay some of this cash in.
So, 6 days left. The major issues we need to sort out are the brakes and other mechanics, the Turkish visa situation, the beer terrace table, flushing out the water containers, fuelling the bus, checking the tyres, a lock on the beer terrace door, Sudanese visas, raffle prizes and a band for the leaving do, food supplies for the trip, malaria tablets and meningitis vaccination, an advert invoice, internal flights for Jo and Sean, return transport for us all from Heathrow, collecting tools and spares, buying a battery charger, obtaining a leisure battery and most importantly, A PLASTIC GRAPE VINE !!!!
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