Change of plan. For reasons of cost and convenience the company we are travelling with have decided to take the big orange truck with us all the way to Sydney. Very happy about this.
Originally we should have been on a coach across Oz. This is great news from the point of view that we’ve become accustomed to our home away from home. Bad news in that we get no A/C in the hot, hot desert (still it can’t be worse than India right?) and we have to clean the truck to Australian Customs import standards, which are very strict…
Rant Possible :
So, the truck clean. About half the truck (15 people) did part 1 (since the other half had temporarily (conveniently?) left the trip to go island hopping) at the back end of Thailand. Part 1 was 4 hours, everything off the truck, air hose out, rubbing surfaces with petrol rags to remove any trace of the muck and dirt accumulated over 6 months or so. My fave job was using a metal scrubbing brush to get “dirt” off the shit shovels. Now, I know how I use this tool – dig hole, use hole, cover hole. Easy. No shit has to ever touch the shovel. But do I trust my travelling compadres to do the same? No. Whilst scrubbing I was imaging all sorts of improvised flicking, tossing, squishing and patting of the waste matter. I did not enjoy this part of the day.
It was hard work, so we were all hoping that the other half of the group may offer to do part 2 on their own. They didn’t. Hmmm.
Rant Approaching :
Part 2, a few days later, really got my back up. Probably because I already thought I had 4 hours cleaning in the bank to call off from the returning beachcombers. Apparently Not. Still, we all got stuck-in to put the finishing touches to the truck before it is loaded and shipped to Darwin.
Big Rich (also on Truck Clean 1) and I were under the rear of the truck removing muck from what I am reliably told were “leaf springs”, “axles” and “wheels”. I have no idea. Hard work for big fellas, not a lot of room to move about. But Rich is a laugh, as I’ve said before he moans like no one else I know so we got through it with good spirits.
Here we go, Rant Commencing :
So why did I get grumpy? Well on climbing out from under the truck I witnessed some people still scrubbing the SAME plastic bread tray as they started an hour earlier. Blood pressure went to 4/10. Then I saw 4 people sat around the Tesco bag of chargers and cables tying then up more neatly. Blood pressure 7/10. Then I saw 2 people alphabetising the books. I am not joking, for real. Blood pressure 11/10. Arrrrgh!
Seriously? I had to throw my t-shirt away (won at an Irish bar with Father Jack on the back saying “Feck Off!”) afterwards. Some of these work shy fops could have cleaned in a white, linen pantsuit.
I know the custom standards are strict, designed to keep insects, seeds and foreign muck out of the country. But I’ll bet my Wes Wilson poster they don’t give a flying kangaroo about the order your books are in! Maybe the culprits were looking for the words muck or dirt? I doubt they were looking for a dictionary and the words elbow or grease.
Tidy cables get a pass from me… I was annoyed at first about the lack of effort, the unnecessary job finding to avoid harder work, but then I remembered just how much I like cables to be tidy.
To be honest it made we want to take a deep, deep breath, inhale a whole lung full of air then shout “Lazy, Lazy LAZY, LAZYLAZYLAZY, LAZYLAZYLAAAAZZZZY! LAZY BASTARDS!!!”. Meh, what’s the point? I put these people in the same category of folk who leave a wet tent in the locker for a few days, making everything smell of rot. Tools. Below Expectations. Must Try Harder.
So – the truck is spotless. I’ll be furious if it mysteriously doesn’t make it to Oz and then I see an Ad for a “nearly new, mint condition safari truck – POA” in the Auto-Trader. Can’t wait for Oz to begin. 16 days back to back camping…
Pic of Driver Adam cracking the whip during part 1 :