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Refused entry into Serbia!

May 3, 2014

 

Precisely one year ago to the hour, Geoff and I on our voyage to Coventry had earlier in the day being refused entry into Serbia due to Geoff being South African and a re-routed journey across the mountains of Bulgaria in the midst of a monster rainstorm, we finally arrived exhausted and disappointed at the ferry quay for our Danube crossing into Romania.

As we rolled past the final border exit checkout from Bulgaria at close to midnight and down the ferry loading slope, we were just in time to admire the ferry leave for Romania; the last ferry for the night.

Nothing to do but to cook up dinner by the river’s edge and throw our sleeping bags down on a reasonably dry spot near the ticket office and wait for the morning ferry to get us to hell out of Bulgaria and on the road again to Coventry.

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The Summer Season Has Begun!

April 26, 2014

Domi, great to see you still world rambling in your HERBIE. next month i hope to ship the JoLon Imp back to South Africa from England.

Herbie's World Tour

The days are getting warmer again and classic cars are waking up from their winter sleep. Yesterday we visited our first show this year. It’s called “Altblech Friday Night Cruising” in the South of Vienna. We showed up together with other members of “DLV” and friends of the legendary Trabant (“Trabantfreunde”).

On September 20 we’re hosting the 3rd Late Summer Ride of Vienna!

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Arrival In Coventry May 6th 2013

April 6, 2014

our arrival in Coventry almost one year ago, before 6am so the long shadows are sunrise shadows!!

sunrise in Coventry

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Significant date!

March 29, 2014

28th of March will be forever etched in our memories as it was the date on which Geoff Biermann and I departed Johannesburg for Coventry in England with a half century old Hillman Imp. An ill prepared Imp might I add. If fact neither Geoff nor I were properly prepped either! with some visas requirements still outstanding, not enough money to cover all our expenses and technical flaws on the Imp not least the loss of reverse gear within meters of my house.

A massive amount has to eb said for a positive attitude, because it was an unwavering belief that we would against all odds succeed, foolhardy perhaps but believing nonetheless.

Our get go to Coventry was one year ago so to commemorate the occasion Geoff and I took another of my Imps and drove a 250 Kilometre loop past Pretoria in the general direction of Coventry but then doubled back to visit another Imp Club member in the quaint little town of Cullinan, made famous by the discovery of the World’s largest ever diamond!

The Imp performed faultlessly and Geoff and I thoroughly enjoyed our day of reminiscing about the memorable JoLon trip. sneak preview……. we even mind-pencilled-in our next Imp adventure!!!)

And we wait!Edenvale-20140328-00249Cullinan Poser David Alderson Smith-20140328-00233Davin Alderson Smith, Geoff Biermann & Terence Tracey @ Cullinan-20140328-00245 (2)G & T en route to CullinanGeoff centre of attention

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Return of the JoLon Imp!

March 19, 2014

So, just when you thought it was safe to forget about this adventurous Imp, it is about to resurface in a few short weeks. it will reappear, this time back on south African soil.

A huge debt of gratitude is due to a number of people who without their help, advice and encouragement and indeed money contributions the trip would not have been possible. Happily through the event we were also able to pass on some collected funds to a few community efforts in South Africa and in the UK. Family was first to back me and give support from depart to the return, love, support and financial assistance. A stalwart of our journey particularly through Africa was the well travelled Roger Pearce of the Randburg based EmGee workshop whose advice and list of contacts was immensely valuable.

another catalyst to our success was the resourceful Roy Mc Bride in cape Town who monitored our every step and keep the greater world up to speed on our whereabouts and over and above this, he imparted imperative (‘scuse the pun) technical info on our Imp when we stumbled across numerous hurdles.

Members of the Imp club in particular were generous in both financial contributions and hospitable to the extreme once we finally arrived in the old country. Nor did it stop there! While i returned to enjoy the sunshine of my home in South Africa, people like the Imp Club Chairman and Richard Sozanski together with the assistance of James Spencer managed to present the JoLon Imp at the coveted Classic Car Of The Year awards at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham last November with the Imp collecting runner up honours. a photographic and exquisite map display was single handedly created by Richard Sozanski that depicted the high and low lights of the journey.

Another key success partner of our achievement was my business partner Arnold of the famous Arnolds restaurant in Kloof Street in Cape Town, who not only helped me with first class support before during and post the trip but managed also to offer sage advice just at the correct time when the wheels were just about to fall off the entire trip. Not only was he on hand with support and advice he also ran our business in Johannesburg while i traipsed across three continents in a car with such a history of un-reliability that i was unlikely to make it through two countries not to mind the twenty that we had planned. In fact if the truth be told, the business ran better when i was away so Arnold maybe now is a good time to let you know that it makes sense for me to head off on another trip in the interest of an improved business!!!

of course our neighbours back home also brought us to tears, tears of great gladness that is, when on our home return, they rounded up a massive well done and welcome home street party that shall stay indelibly etched into fond memories of our trip until my dying days and beyond!

I have had the great honour to present slide and video presentations of our epic trip to many groups of clubs and companies and I am proud to add that only very few attendees nodded off during the shows!

The trip was a particularly meaningful achievement for me personally and subsequently i have put together a record of the journey and i expect to have this book ready for editing by end March.

I would like to know if there is a publishing house out there that would be prepared to assist with bring this book to market for me, any ideas??? it will be a book of approximately 85, 000 words and probably 75 to 100 pictures.

 

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2013 in review

March 19, 2014

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 24,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 9 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

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JoLon Imp on show at the British Classic Car Show.

November 14, 2013

 

While the Imp Club Chairman Graham Anderson and James Spencer were traversing England with my JoLon Imp on a trailer taking it to form part of the Classic Car Of The Year stand where on Saturday it will be handed its FINAL JUDGEMENT, I was sharing the transcontinental Imp journey slide and video show with a bunch of friends, some of whom i had not seen for years. it was great to meet up with those friends and all the time knowing that the Imp that carried Geoff and I all through Africa and over Europe is about to be recognised for its sterling effort was exceptionally pleasing to me in articular.

Holding thumbs for the Imp to grip 1st spot when the judges do their thing on Saturday 16th!

 

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Thanks Graham Anderson for taking and sending me the photo of the JoLon Imp being set up on the ccoty finalists stand at the NEC.

 

Alan Hendy taking JoLon for a drive Tuesday 7th May 2013

Grateful thanks also to Alan Hendy (seen here actually driving the JoLon around the quiet streets of Aldridge) for his hospitality and support while we were in the UK.

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Ms Vangile of the Johannesburg Society for the Blind accepting another donation form the JoLon team.