My car is due its first official road test last month.
Seeing as last month and this month were fully book up I put it down for March. If they have a problem with that, then that’s their problem.
The test is next week which is fine [apart from the fact that it lands me in the morning rush hour and even worse, I have to get up early].
It occurred to me that I had better have the car checked over. I have had it for eighteen months so it’s about due a service anyway. I phoned Spanner and he can do it on Thursday. Fine. Except that the car could do with a bit of a clean inside.
The forecast [mine, not that shower in the Met Office] is for rain tomorrow and Wednesday so if I were to clean out the car I would have to do it today.
I did it just now.
I was surprised at how clean it was. There was the usual quarter ton of gravel in the foot well which gets carried in on my shoes and there was a packet of mints which had melted into a horrible sticky mess. There was a nasty area in the boot where it looked like someone had vomited but I cleaned that easily. Actually it was a Mexican Bean Tagine which has spilt but it still looked like dried puke.
In the days when Sandy was around, cleaning the car was a nightmare. She shed hairs like a blizzard and the cloth on the seats and floors where solid with them. It was a nightmare cleaning them using combs, dry sponges and a powerful vacuum cleaner. Penny sheds hairs all right but is very neat about it. She has a rug in the middle of the back seat and it’s the only place she’ll go in the car so all I have to do is remove the rug and give it a good shake.
Anyhows, I was vacuuming away when it crossed my mind that I had never actually seen the engine. It shows how old I’m getting as it used to be the first area to explore. But in all those eighteen months I had never once lifted the bonnet [that’s the front lifty uppy sheet of metal that you Mercans insist on calling a “hood”]. The time had come.
And this is where the confusionism comes into play. For the life of me I can’t find how to open the fucking thing. I have searched everywhere. There is a lever beside the seat which I pulled but that just opened the boot [that’s the back lifty uppy sheet of metal with a window on it for you Mercans]. That was no good. I pulled another big lever I found in the darkness and the whole steering wheel column fell on my head. That wasn’t it. I found another large knob that seems to twist but it’s quite stiff and didn’t have any obvious effect. I don’t know what it is but it isn’t what I was looking for.
In the end and in moment of utter frustration I tried the last and ultimate resort [to be used only in sheer desperation] – the manual.
There it was. A little lever on the side of the foot well. It was on the left of the drivers foot well but the illustration was for a left-hand drive, so it must be on the right hand side by the door. I happily went back to the car.
Nothing. No lever. Just a nice pristine surface. No knobs, levers or switches. Nowt.
So I still haven’t seen my engine.
I wonder if Spanner knows the answer?