Vehicle Voodoo | Transfrontier Africa | Michael Scholl

Vehicle Voodoo

Well I haven’t written a blog in some time.The past month has been rather draining and it feels like ground hogs day inparadise. It was the month of Land Rovers and we have poured every last cent that we had into these bloody Landies. How we could be so obsessed with these things I can’t tell you. 

We finally managed to get, ‘Beelzebub,’back from the mechanics after 2 long years. The Landy, (which was cast in hell from the sands of Mount Doom) was originally sent away for new seat covers and a shiny new paint job, so that we could sell it. During its time away it was indeed sprayed and reupholstered, and then sold, however it was not sold by us but instead by the people who fixed it up. This was great, or so we thought, until we couldn’t get the money out of them…….?!?! The story changed after awhile and we heard then that they had rented it out and the people who rentedit and driven the car in low range and destroyed the gear box. AWESOME! 

Long story short, we got the car back! Craig was ecstatic with joy, rum was shared stories were told and overall we thought this would give us time to fix the mighty, ‘Spartacus’. This was the plan until we found out that in the past two years the petrol tank had rusted to death and the mechanics had stuffed up the engine beyond repair. And to top it off the Landy from hell kept throwing the driver out of the car every time it turned left as the driver’s door would swing open. EVIL LANDY FROM HELL! 

So we decided to fix ‘Spartacus’ and get it going again while we fix, ’Beelzebub!’ Francois drove, ‘Beelzebub,’ for the last day managing to get only 2 punctures, while Tim Craig and I replaced the bushes for ‘Spartacus.’ The regular tool of choice was a sledge hammer, with the standard request being, ‘pass me the bashing-tool.’ We decided that on the next safari we should pack one of those… So now, ‘Spartacus,’ runs smoothly and we can concentrate on fixing the Landy which was made for Lucifer. 

We thought we had finally made a plan and things can only get better from here, but would you believe it, The Ark had issues next…… My heart was broken; I was going to take the volunteers up the Drakensburg. Yay, a day of driving my favorite thing in the world ‘The Ark,’ We had just had breakfast when I heard a, “KLACK BANGGRRRRRRRRRRRDDDDDDDDDDD,” sound come from the engine. I was shocked, I had no idea what to expect and when I opened my bonnet. I couldn’t help but think about Craig saying the night before that this car was super dependable. As I opened bonnet and leaned into the mouth of this mighty V8 machine I saw what had happened. The radiator had moved backwards into the fan and thus ripped the fan to shreds and the radiator had a hole in it the size of a five rand coin. Shame. I hate having a broken car, but I love fixing it. 

I remember growing up and laughing at a joke I heard one night when I was about 15 years old. At this point in time I wasn’t able to relate but laughed along anyways. The saying was when you buy a Land Rover make sure you buy two, as you will need spare parts. It’s a saying which has become rather funny in the past month as have come to understand these things first hand. And so I go onto Bubu’s mighty Series 3 Land Rover. Mufasa, is the newest Land Rover in the fleet of now 8 Land Rovers. I can’t help but look at,‘Mufasa,’ and think on one hand why have you brought all these troubles ontoyourself, and on the other hand I look at ,’Mufasa,’ and think ‘ooooooweeeee, spare parts.’

© / Michael Scholl Copyright 2012 for TransFrontier Africa and Craig Spencer