Thursday, July 14: Hello again everyone. Yesterday we successfully completed the drive from Vilnius to Warsaw without any major problems. We’re getting close enough to the finish line that I’m beginning to think the car might actually hold together and make it (fingers crossed, knock on wood).
That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s going to be easy. Yesterday we again found ourselves amid a multitude of mechanical issues, however, luckily none of them were too serious. Before we had even gotten out of the city we had another case of the stopfornoapparentreason-sies. One moment, we were just driving along and the next we were pulled over trying to figure out why our car wouldn’t go.
But before we could figure it out, the car started with no problem and we were back on our way. More than likely, something in the electrical system is to blame, but as long as we’re still moving it’s a problem that can wait until we get to Berlin. How foolish of us to think our troubles were over. Within a hundred miles we had a new, much more apparent issue. Our font stabilizing rod broke off and gave us a good scare by noisily dragging on the pavement for a couple hundred feet.
After a quick inspection, it was clear that the bracket holding the rod to the axle, which we had repaired in Russia with a weld, had broken again – this time completely. Luckily this problem was also not that serious. The rod simply acts to stabilize the movement of the car and make steering easier. It’s really no problem to drive without it, and the original 32s didn’t even have them. So, after disconnecting the other end we were back on the road and continued to Warsaw with no further problems.
One interesting thing about yesterday was the lack of VW Beetles in the group. Ed and Janet elected to travel separately from the group and instead drive with their friends Klaus and Maya whom we met up with in Vilnius. It made the drive a little more interesting because, since we were going to the same place, there would be times where we would pass them at a gas station or they would pass us at lunch. I’m not sure what the plan is for the rest of the race, but for the next few days it seems that we will only see Ed and Janet at the hotels.
And really… that’s all I have to write about for yesterday. We got to the city and went to dinner and that was pretty much it. The next city we hope to reach is Berlin, where plans are in the works for at least some measure of repair work to be done. And, since it is technically the 15th, I would like to wish a very happy birthday to my girlfriend Magnolia Gramling. I love you and I hope you have a great day. And on that note, I will say good day.