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The WoSJ guest blogger from Paris Eiffel Jumping; Kay Neatham

Saturday, 05 July 2014

A short word about getting to Paris...

Most of the time everything, because of proper planning, runs smoothly but that wasn't to be for our trip this time around. Left home, drove to Holland where I picked up a driver and a present from friends of English chocolate (Cadburys) – all was well...

About an hour later we all heard a clonk sound, I went back to check the horses and could hear something dragging on the ground under the truck... Went back to the front and said calmly that we should pull over at the next safest place. So we pulled in at the next exit on a small parking place, I got out and the batteries from the living had fallen out the bottom of the truck due to a rusty nail on the hinge, that holds them in. I made it all safe and it was smoking a bit, so we found the fire extinguisher put it next to the batteries and got out ropes, lounge lines and chifneys ready to unload in case.

I called DKV which is the best service ever, told them where we were. They already have the truck information and then they call me a garage in the country I'm in, tell them my problem and an hour later the service van arrived. The guy smiled a little at my fire extinguisher and explained it is battery acid leaking out, which we could already smell, I presume sulpha, and the snake was the acid reaction... But ok at least I had read the instructions and remember how to use one!

Left the batteries in Belgium secured everything and we were on our way. Our estimated time of arrival in the centre of Paris was now 17.10. SUPER – peak hour traffic, I couldn't have planned it better if I tried!

I tried the generator to see if anything worked in my living, without batteries and it did so I left it running a bit as I haven't used it for a while. What I forgot was that when I had sorted out the batteries etc when we first pulled over, I had been covered in grease so I went in the living put washing-up liquid all over my arms and hands, turned on the tap, no water, because I had shut off everything until I was sure it was safe to use. When I put everything back on, I didn't turn the tap off, so by the time we got to Paris and I realized there was no water left in my water tank!

Luckily I have friends who have showers, so thx Celia for letting me use yours, a bottle of water is sufficient for my teeth in the morning!!

The traffic was shocking in Paris I was wondering if the Parisians have a competition going on for the Guinness Book of Records for how many cars you can get round one round about!

Unfortunately we had a little run in with a car here, so had to pull over, which was a challenge in itself, paper work etc etc – on my truck is not a scratch..

By this point I had eaten all 400g of Cadburys chocolate, and could have eaten more... We finally arrived at the show ground, I felt like we'd driven 2000 km straight through and should be in Spain somewhere, instead of the 600km to Paris.

I was very grateful for so many people from the show and friends that helped us unload and get sorted. At the end we were still smiling and happy that actually nothing serious happened.


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