The disastrous day.
All last week, I got prepared for my test drive. Today was the day.
I started my bus, and put it into gear, however, after sitting a year and a half, the bus had sunk into the mud.
A very nice neighbor, Chuck, came over when I had asked him if he could help pull me out. He came over with his Chevy four wheel drive pickup truck. He hooked a chain to my front bumper, and even with me in drive and him pulling, the bus did not move.
So Chuck says that he is going to go get his diesel Ford dually truck. He comes back with that one and lo and behold, we get the bus unstuck.
Yahoo, I am ready to start my test drives.
I had mentioned to you skoolies that I was nervous about driving this big beasty. Interestingly, I felt comfortable after a few minutes.
NOW, this is where the story goes awry.
I had gone a mile and a half. I was on a narrow road.
A truck was approaching from the opposite direction. I pulled over to the right. The next thing I know is that I am in a two and a half foot ditch.
The bus is almost tipped over on it's side.
The approaching truck stops. Funny thing is that it was my other neighbor, Kelly. I yelled out of my driver's window, "yes it's me".
So, Kelly saw the whole thing happen.
I tried calling Chuck but could not reach him. Kelly said that he would go tell him of my demise. Both Kelly and Chuck come to the place of my disaster.
Chuck surveys the situation, and we both realize that he can not pull this bus out. He was worried that any attempt might cause the bus to flip over on it's side.
NOW, comes along another neighbor named Clint. He says that he has a backhoe. He says that he has pulled many people out of precarious positions.
Clint gets out of his truck, and looks at the situation. He also realizes that there is not much he can do. He was also concerned about the bus flipping over with any attempt to extricate it.
On a humorous note, It was funny to see my dogs trying to walk on the wooden floor of my bus that was tilted thirty degrees if not more.
So, Chuck calls a towing company. We wait for an hour for this GIANT towing truck to arrive. It is the kind of truck that can tow tractor trailer rigs.
I did not get a picture of it, but you know what they look like.
The operator of the truck and I talked over the strategy. He also had some trepidation about accomplishing this mission.
He parked on the left hand of the road. He hooked up a big cable through a pulley. He hooked up a chain to my front axle. He told me to go in the bus and turn my steering wheel to the left when he started winching me back on the road.
It was a great feeling when I felt the bus get back on level ground. I did not damage the bus.
Despite all the people present (neighbors) who were worried about the bus tipping over (the tow truck guy included), I figured that I had no other option.
Now comes the part where I should have brought a jar of Vaseline. You know (bend over and grab your ankles).
It cost me $375 for that guy who worked for less than an hour to pull me out.
I said,"are you serious?"
He said that he does not make the prices. He only works for the company. I guess the company is doing all they can to pay off that brand new tow truck.
I did compliment the operator on the good job that he had done.
So now, I am stuck. I had $400 saved for getting my little pickup truck hauled to Tennessee. Unless I can find something to sell SOON, I will not be able to leave on the 11th of May.
Not to be deterred from my mission today, I made four loops on my test drives. After my mishap, when I encountered other vehicles, I just slowed down and let them figure out how to get by me.
Here are some pics of Mr. Dumbass (me) in the ditch. It was an epic day that I will not soon forget. A funny thing is that I had asked Shaun's mom (from where I live presently) if she would like to go on the test drives.
She declined. I told her that it was best that she did.
Now I have to pick up all the stuff that went flying inside the bus.
I just do not like this bus which has the steer wheel behind the driving seat.