Back to Work . . .

Paul Gowland ATV forecourt

With a hymn of praise in my heart for the local mechanics and engineers who keep us on the road, I ambled carefully on into Allendale, nursing the baby wheel (80km/hr maximum, or 50mph to you and me) which I’d put on the front passenger side a couple of days ago after bouncing into a great pothole coming back through Catton, and experiencing a rather quicker deflation than I’d hoped.

The little old bakery car (which still has its yellow sun logo for cheerfulness, but otherwise is merely dazzlingly brilliant green) has been having trouble with rusting wheel rims as well, and we feared a replacement of at least two wheels in addition to tyre repairs if feasible, replacements if not, was on the cards.

Happily, Graeme Gowland was able to knock the bad dent out of the front wheel, which facilitated a good seal again on the re-pressurized tyre. And I left the other leaky tyre/wheel with Gowlands (who also serve as the local ATV centre for these valleys) for the day to try to re-burnish that reluctant rim preparatory to achieving a better seal. Maybe we’ll get away with minimal expense this time.

Transport is probably the biggest challenge facing rural villages, these days, and just keeping a vehicle on the road is the key to independent living, if you happen to live outside of convenient walking distance to the shops. So I came home with the spirit of that song in my heart, as Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue poured out of the radio.

On the way back, I passed neighbour Nigel carefully working on the roadside re-building an old stone wall dyke which had gone to wrack and ruin over several decades, and I realised that I might have a good topic for tomorrow’s entry already up my sleeve.

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