It's coming up to my financial year end and the order book is looking very healthy with new customers and active old ones. You don't really want to know all this but it serves to explain why work on Andrew's locos and the shed really has moved back to being a weekend thing again.
After a slight hiccup in communication, which resulted in me sitting around most of Monday afternoon, I set off for Langwith to collect the newly-ebayed cement mixer. It was though waiting for me on arrival, swiftly loaded into the van, and I set off back for Darley Dale with it in the back and I thought, unlikely to 'go anywhere'. It is a cross-country trip up hill and down dale, and all was well until, braking steadily on a downhill with a sharp bend at the bottom, a car coming the other way came wide around the bend and onto my side of the road. I braked hard. There was no collision, but the mixer set off down the van, toppled over and sculpted a new dent in the toolbox.
I like to open these posts with a thought-provoking, insightful observation into the state of the heritage railway industry or something equally profound, but usually fail to think of anything. Tonight is no exception.
For most of my news this week I must rely on other people's efforts: for with less than a week to go before Rob leaves Peak Rail (at least in a full time capacity) the pace to get the trackwork completed has hardly slowed down.
So, an apology first to all those who logged in last night or earlier this morning looking for this week's edition of the blog. Unfortunately the Briddon family were struck down by a vomiting bug – starting with Steph on Christmas day night. Andrew started Saturday evening and by comparison I had it easy – waking up at 5 am Sunday morning feeling very cold and nauseous and remaining so most of the day. Consequently I stayed in bed but not having eaten since Saturday night, my stomach was emptier and I managed to avoid the joy of up-chucking.
So, back to normal timetable and with the nights drawing in, a slightly earlier start to this week's edition. Several times during the week I have driven over the level crossing at Darley and glanced across to check all was well on the site. And there, forlorn and exposed, has been my forklift, which as you will recall from last week, got so far up the site alongside the shed before effectively becoming marooned in the soft, dirt and ash surface. And as it quietly slumbered, its sheer weight has assured its slow but apparent settlement into the ground as if it was taking root. I did not want it to do so.
7th May 2012
With the last weekend before the AFRPS gala, attention once again has concentrated on D2128 - or 03 901 as it has started semi-seriously to be called - with the intention of getting it running. Indeed, a large part of Friday was taken up with touring various suppliers collecting bits and as a result, we set off for Scunthorpe on Saturday morning with a van well-loaded, including 80 litres of hydraulic oil for the transmission, 40 of engine oil for the Cummins, anti-freeze, over 20metres of hose in assorted bores and ends (my little swager is good for up to 1/2", anything bigger I get ready-made by my local supplier), various fittings, 5" bore exhaust pipe in solid and flexible, together with clamps and a bend, and so on.