08-01-2006 The story of the trailer

It is Saturday afternoon. David and I spend the whole morning at the trailer repair shop. They had fixed the mechanical connection of the trailer and I have to admit it looked better then it ever has before. They also fixed the electrical connection. Great! There is one extra thing we want to ask them; we want a support to put a spare tire for the Toyota. Because we are going to a remote area with bad roads David thinks it's wise to bring an extra spare tire for the car. The trailer already has 2 spare tires… or at least that is what I thought.

We talk to the guys, explain them what we want and then the guy 'dood leuk' says: “but these wheels are different it will be hard to fit on this trailer”. I am completely stunned. The size of the tires are different as well. And, but this we already new, the second hand spare tires are not really in a good condition. He strongly advises us to get other ones. So now we have to find better used tires for the trailer.

We decide to resolve this immediately and drive 20 km to a store where they sell tires just to discover that they are closed on Saturday. So we go back to the workshop where the guys have a nice surprise for us. When they removed the spare tires from the trailer, they discovered that the trailer arm was totally cracked!! Had we be driving around with this trailer all the time? Anyway, they are already busy repairing it as much as possible.

We wait one more hour to let them fix a support for the spare car tire. We watch 3 man working hard on our trailer. I am really grateful they squeezed us in their very busy schedule. When they finish we pay and tralalala drive back to the city (the distances are LARGE here). I can not believe what happens when all of a sudden we hear metal scraping on the floor. The support system for the boat has come off! The screws were always a bit loose and have to be tightened now and then. This clearly has not been done for a while and now we see the result. We pull over, scrape together what is left… and decide to go and eat something first.

The stolen field equipment has just arrived yesterday night from Natal and needs to be checked and repacked… As I said, today it is Saturday and we want to leave on Tuesday.

I was hoping to leave totally rested to Tierra del Fuego, but we have only been running 12 -13 hours a day these last weeks :-( Two months ago I optimistically thought that I would have time to think about a model that I would like to develop. Well, I have not even had time to read the articles I wanted to check. I feel a travel agent, a trouble shooter, an expedition leader, and a paper work person. I feel very far from being a PhD student.

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