Alla inlägg under december 2006

Av Vilhelmina - 31 december 2006 15:55

We and team Pith Heads along the road to Marrakech.(Publicerat av Owe)

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Av Vilhelmina - 31 december 2006 08:23

We did expect problems at borders, we did expect to pay bribes. But we didn't expect them to not accept bribes and to tell us we had to leave the ambulance in the customs, by law! We first lined up behind all normal cars but when we said it's an ambulance we were shown to the customs for imports. We tried arguing, begging, sweet talking but nothing worked. We were close to get in when they realised we weren't stopping in morocco, but last minute they said no. Everyone told us different things, but we eventually worked out that they wanted papers from the hospital saying we're going there. We phoned the ambassador - my mobile bill will be astronomical! I don't even want to think about it - and he got on to the hospital. Bloody nuisance that we arrived on a saturday... No one was working! At the same time as we kept ringning the ambassador i rang dad and asked him to fake something. He got it together and after struggling with finding a fax and work out what the number was to it we finally got dad's fax through. We then thought it had to be in french. Dad got hold of someone with good enough french to translate his english and after googling the hospital and nicking the logo and finding the name of the hospital director he produced someting that looked official enough. It was bloody brilliant!Before we got that though i had turned on the waterworks. I broke down and 'cried hysterically' and mark tried to 'comfort' me. Halfway through my repertoire i got the text from dad saying he had faxed it. Mark had gone back to the truck so i discretely texted him telling him to go and get the fax whilst i sat crying in the customs directors office. They kept telling us that big boss wouldn't come until tuesday and they couldn't let us through. But then they told us there was a middle boss who might arrive today... Now, when i turned on the waterworks i had five blue coats gathering around me trying to console me so reading dad's text and texting mark without them noticing wasn't the easiest. Finally mark came running with the fax and things started to look better. The middle boss saw us, looked at the fax from dad and decided to let us in. Then they stopped for lunch! Eventually someone came and told us mark had to go up to the police to sign in and get his passport stamped. Mark toddled off and i kept 'crying' and looking lost. In the passport queue Mark got talking to a girl that looked british. He was telling her about our problems and she goes; are you mark by any chance? It turns out she works at waterloo ambulance station and knew all about us! We did get out in the end and the feeling when he opened the big metal gates were incredible. "Drive mark! Drive!!" The hardest for me i think was to do all the arguing in french. They didn't speak a word of english...The boys are sleeping now and i will go to sleep as well. We're in a campsite near rabat and the rest of the teams are here. What a good story we had to tell them. They had all seen us locked into the compound... Anyway, night night and thanks for all cheering on and help! We couldn't have done it without you, especially not without dad's fake fax... (Publicerat av Owe)

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Av Vilhelmina - 29 december 2006 11:04

Fantastiskt, man kan anvanda internet i receptionen. Nog for att jag far sta vid receptionsdisken, men det ar internet i alla fall!!Rummet var totalt vardelost inatt - vattenberedaren gav ifran sig ett tjut ungefar var 45 sekund, hogst irriterande. Vi forsokte stanga av den men det hjalpte inte. Det resulterade bara i att vi inte hade varmvatten imorse, hurra!On top of that sa var det iskallt. Vi pluggade i ett varmeelement som vi hittade och det gjorde att en propp gick. Det stoppade inte vattenberedaren dock, den fortsatte tjuta obehindrat. Jag kan ju inte saga att vi sov sarskilt bra, sov nastan battre i ambulansen i minusgrader... Vi har nu bytt rum och ar i 114 istallet, mycket battre. Jag blir sa glad for alla textmeddelanden jag far, Maj och Ingemar textade igar, jattekul! Hotellet ar i overigt valdigt fint faktiskt. Det ar nog ett ratt lyxigt stalle. De flesta andra teamen ar jattetrevliga. Vi har slagit oss ihop med Pithheads, Mark och hans mamma Terri. De ar jattetrevliga. De kor en gammal landrover och deras top speed ar inte mycket mer an vad vi fixar sa det passar oss utmarkt. Vi har kopt biljett for farjan till Tanger imorgon, forhoppningsvis tar vi den som gar vid 11:00. Vi vantar bara pa att Tigger ska anlanda... Ha det gott och glom inte att kolla Twitter, dar uppdaterar jag oftast.

Av Vilhelmina - 27 december 2006 08:43

We're in Granada, camping in La Zubia. I'm still amazed at how little english, french or any other language they speak here. Ok, i can accept that the countryside doesn't speak other languages but i would have thought madrid and the bigger cities would have some english knowledge at least. Spanish mountains are beautiful. The country goes from extremes really, from the flattest of flat to rocky cliffs and huge chains of mountains. We're currently just at the base of Sierra Nevada. The power inverter we had for charging the mobiles died sadly so we stopped in Granada to find a mobile phone shop. After a bit of faffing we found something that looked like a shopping street.We parked the ambulance on the corner of a street and i jumped out. They didn't have anything in the shop we'd found, but, on the way there i had passed an optician and i popped in there to see if they had any clip on sunglasses. They didn't have any off the shelf ones, but if i had 30 minutes they could custom make some for me. I thought that was a good idea as i needed to find a car charger anyway. I handed over my glasses and then ran back to the ambulance to put contacts in. I set off down one of the streets and eventually found a shop that did phone accessories. The girl looked curiously at me when i jumped up and down with excitement at having found a charger. "You are looking long charger?" she asked me and i nodded vigorously.We stayed in a hotel last night as we just couldn't manage another night in minus degrees. The temperature is dropping now, it's currently +6 outside and +17 in the truck. Hopefully we should be ok tonight. We haven't got much of a drive tomorrow which is nice. I look forward to washing my hair again. One thing i don't get is why they don't have seats on their toilets in France and Spain. How on earth do they go for number 2's? Do they hover? Do they sit on the bowl? Anyway. Cheers Viv(Publicerat av Owe)

Av Vilhelmina - 26 december 2006 17:28

Vår ambulans vid ett stopp uppe i Pyrenéerna.(Publicerat av Owe)

Av Vilhelmina - 26 december 2006 08:57

I'm tucked up in bed, dressed in tracksuit bottoms, woolly socks, t-shirt and a fleece jacket. I'm between two fleece blankets and under a duvet. It's -3 outside and only +6 in the ambulance. It'll be a long night... We slept on the motorway yesterday. There was a little resting place where they had toilets and a few benches for picnics. We parked the ambulance on one of the terrasses for benches - well, we realised in the morning that's what it was for... The toilets were actually remarkably clean and the view was absolutely stunning as we were about 1000m above sea level. Couldn't have woken up in a nicer place even if we tried. And, most importantly, it didn't cost us anything. We've realised our little girl is very thirsty, she did 13 miles to the gallon today... The weather was to start with fantastic, bright blue sky and views more beautiful than a postcard. All trees were totally frosted and it looked like we were going through Narnia. We're currently in a family run campsite in Agos Vidalos called Soleil du Pibeste. The lady of the house kindly let us stay for free when i explained what we're doing! She said it's a way of participating. So nice to see that there are nice people in the world! We tried getting away from the tolls as well, but that wasn't as successful. One girl changed us from class 2 to class 1 which meant we got it cheaper at least. Time for bed now. Sleep well. (I'm updating twitter more regularly so check that one as well if you want more news from Ambulance Antics.)Följ Vivi på http://twitter.com/vivi(Publicerat av Owe)

Av Vilhelmina - 23 december 2006 21:44

We've landed in france alright and are driving down the A1 towards Paris. We've probably got another couple of hours to the campsite. My seat, the one in the middle that jules put in, is a bit wallace and gromit-esque; you have to hold a lever and then push yourself back to get the seat down and then you can climb into the back. Now, i've perfected the art of doing that brilliantly, however, i need to ensure i don't kick the sirens-button whilst climbing into the back. That would probably cause a bit a stir...We sat in the club lounge on the ferry which was very nice. We had to book a ticket we could change and the club lounge is included in that price. It turned out very well actually as we came in quite early to dover so we caught the early ferry and are now an hour and a half ahead of our schedule. We also got a complimentary glass of champagne so the journey started very nice indeed. The molton brown handwash will soon be a distant, fading memory...(Publicerat av Owe)

Av Vilhelmina - 22 december 2006 18:16

Hjälp, nu åker vi snart! En natt till i London och imorgon vid lunch drar vi! Herregud!! :-) Trailer för Plymouth to Banjul Rally. Glöm inte att dra upp ljudet.

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