A one-time school project gone terribly, terribly wrong.

10 June 2007

Okay. Yesterday was busy ...

First: A big shout-out to my favourite stalker(s). You know who you are, if you've found this blog. Heartical, mi brother, mi sistah ...

Mme Metro had to run the local morning market yesterday. I had an appointment to participate in a sailboat race. We have one car. Ta-da-da-DA-da-da! Yamaha U7e to the rescue, right?

Well not exactly ...

I leaped aboard my trusty steed and headed for the thriving hamlet of Winterfly, just up the shoreline from home. Because my scooter won't do much more than 70 km on dead flat road, it's just barely legal for the highway here. I hugged the right side of the road, but still had the odd narrow escape from people passing at 110+.

The hill up to Winterfly is long, and after running flat out for so long my U7 could no longer stand it. Suddenly the engine lurched. If the transmission had been a standard, it would have left a short rubber trail before dumping my collective onto the ground. As it was, the automatic clutch disengaged and the vehicle dragged to a halt.

Investigation found that the engine was seized. It could be kicked around only with the greatest of difficulty. But that was what I did. After a cool-down, it started up again just fine.

Yes, I know that this was not the brightest thing, but I was a long way from home, stuck on the highway. So I rode into town, went to the lake, and went sailing.

Plywood ducks are a relatively new phenomenon here. Background: someone from my last production, known hereafter as Christine Holstein (because her last name prominently includes the "cow" sound, and not for cruel jest) built one as a project to help bring her closer to her father. He had to work yesterday, and she knew nothing of sailing, so I did the white knight bit while successfully hiding my lust to sail.

It was a sweet time. The weather was blustery and rainy. We were out for about five hours. In the end, we came in second. Unfortunately that was because only two boats finished the race. But Chris had built a really nice boat, and it was a pleasure to sail it for her. If she can learn to sail it without my lardy ass in the boat, she'll win races one day.

Following dinner, I went and picked up a bottle of wine at the store where Horatio Kos's sister works. You'll recall me whingeing about the two of them earlier? We were perfectly civil. That was it. It wasn't until I got home at nearly ten PM that I'd discover she'd written me around lunchtime.

With wine in hand, I hopped aboard my (t)rusty U7e again, and sped homeward ... sorta.

I had decided not to take the highway. Again, not the smartest possible option. But in defence of my stupid brain I was tired and felt like not dodging traffic. So I elected to go and find the forest service road connecting Winterfly and Hometown.

I wound my way into the mountains and sped along a muddy dirt road, heading almost exactly in the wrong direction. You see, one dirt road unsigned looks very like another, and like other unsigned items one must look carefully to ensure one has the genuine article. The one I was on didn't go to Hometown, but rather to Scionville, some 40 km further away and considerably further West than I would need to be.

It should have been 17 to 20 miles home (miles: an ancient and outmoded form of measurement in which the speedometer of the Yamaha U7e as sold in Montreal in 1973 was graded). After 30 km, I became fretful.

Then she stalled for the first time.

I paused to verify that I had fuel and oil, and pressed on as soon as she started again. But after a few more clicks, she quit.

Finally, after several stops and starts, she stalled and would not start again. Terrific. I was 30 km from the only civilization in the area I could be certain of, 10 km from the last ranch, and five from the dam construction site I had passed where I might find a proper tool kit--safely locked in a shipping container no doubt.

Fortunately the forest roads have their code, and a man and his son stopped to help. Paul and Pat, who will never know the shout-out I am giving them here, loaded my bike atop their aluminum fishing boat, drove me 30 km back to Winterfly, then took me via the highway to my home. They refused all payment: beer, gas money, or hookers, and insisted on driving me to the house, where at 10:00 PM, with darkness locking in, Mme was becoming somewhat understandably Anxious.

Paul and Pat didn't accept my offer of just one beer. Instead they said "Pay it forward" and drove off. So if you break down in the area of Hometown and you're stuck, wait around, I'll be along sooner or later.

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At 11:56 a.m., Blogger Philipa said...

I'm answering your call!

I used to crew a 505 and then crewed a 47ft cat across the Channel and Biscay and down to Portugal which made me realise I just don't like bigger boats, the 5-oh is fun.

Hope it's ok to pop by!!!!!

At 11:57 a.m., Blogger Philipa said...

Oh bytheway Metro, if you ever want to say hi you can get my email from raincoaster - it'd be great to hear from you.
All best.

At 12:11 a.m., Anonymous G Eagle Esq said...

Bonjour M Metro


How inefficient are the Poor - their mo-peds break down - they pay penalties for late=payment on their credit cards (before they are cancelled) - blah - blah - blah - they vote DemoKrat - blah - blah - blah - they tend to die earlier and educationally under-achieve before dying - blah - blah

Whilst the Rich are affortlessly efficient, paying their bills timeously on extended credit - with 2 new Mercedes in the Drive & a new Aston Martin hidden in the Garage

* in these unCivilized times, one just can't park one's Aston Martin on the public highway - what with Schockingly-Greedy Parking-Meters & plebs scratching the paintwork with offensive weapons (in Canuckistani - "a Knife")

and the Rich are so sensibly RepubliKan Voters (except Champagne Sozialisten, who have off-shre trussts/bank accounts and can afford to vote DemoKrat)

- blah - blah - blah

but isn't it encouraging that there are so many kind folk about .....

Your obedient servant etc

G Eagle

At 3:01 a.m., Anonymous Anonymous said...

... and after all :

when did your Merc ever break down (without the Aston Martin being available to save the day

... blah, blah, blah

At 7:44 a.m., Blogger Metro said...

I thank my readers for their kind but subtle reminders that I should have had James follow me in the Bentley.

Very clumsy of me.

At 3:14 p.m., Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you really feel the need to pay it forward, I plan to be stranded at the Kelowna Airport bar in the near future.


At 3:09 a.m., Anonymous raincoaster said...

This all sounds congruent with my plan to get Boris Johnson to buy me expensive, boozy lunches and tour me around Europe in the Lamborghini, on the very good excuse that no Canuckistani was ever converted to capitalism by the soggy temptation of a takeout curry and a bus pass.

You should learn from me, Metro. Also, you should be riding a bicycle. Easy on the back, tough on the gut.

At 11:08 a.m., Anonymous Philipa said...

Raincoaster - I'm sure he would.

Mr Eagle Sir, I miss your comments, so nice to see them here.

At 11:13 a.m., Blogger Metro said...

Pippa! Forgot to tell you:

I've discovered the boat won't hold three (especially since I'm what the nautical types call broad-beamed).

So when the handsome young feller comes up to you in the pub, bearing a drink, fish the sovereign out and tell him I've called off the press-gang.

At 2:55 p.m., Anonymous Philipa said...

No worries Metro - I wouldn't even be a stowaway nowadays. I just sit by the harbour and raise my collar against the storm.

At 3:44 a.m., Blogger G Eagle said...

The Lady ApilihP

My Lady


Your Bolg is now impetrable to a Technological Half-Wit, such as your obedient servant

Yours ever


At 3:57 a.m., Blogger G Eagle said...

Salve Magister Metro

As one has had occasion to mutter in the past :

Haec trutina errat
[What's wrong with these scales]

Bolg should read "Golb"

Impenetrable, dammit !!!

Estne ebriamen de furfure avenaceo factum ?

[Can you really get booze from Oat Bran ?]

With apologies to Magistro AerChilbaldo et Henrico Barbato

Vale et Tot siens

Aquila non Candida


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