I was going to quote Robert Burns again about the best laid plans and such like, but decided not to. You probably know it anyway. My plan was to drive to Adelaide, stay two nights in Adelaide then drive to Mount Gambier, visit the sailing ship The Lady Nelson, then out to the Umpherston Sink Hole Gardens, then the Englebrecht Caves. Busy day planned, but none of that happened. Left home on Wednesday morning and drove to the Tin Man and the stop for fuel and food. From there I drove to Lochiel. The reason for Lochiel was simply that I had been up since 5:00 to take Benji for his walk before driving off at 7am, so by Lochiel I was a tad weary and wanted some air (rain) and some coffee . Got back to the car and it wouldn’t start. I had brought the charger with me so after a bit I was able to get the car started and continue on my way. A short while later, at Port Wakefield I had a similar problem. By this time I was getting a bit concerned and began to notice things, like the way the car surged when I put on the lights. I decided not to go shopping as I had planned but drive directly to the hotel. Driving through the city of Adelaide was a nightmare for me and I was scared that the car would suddenly stop at one of the many sets of traffic lights. Booked into the hotel then came back out to get my cases. I called Annabell to let her know what was happening and that the battery had really cut out and I could not get the car open – pressed button – boot would not open – pressed button – car door would not open, so I could not even get to the charger. Was talking about things when Annabell cut through my rant with the words “have you tried using the key?” You can imagine how disappointed I was when the ground below my feet did not open up and swallow me to hide my embarrassment nor protect me from the hysterical laughter that could be clearly heard coming from my phone. You can bet your very last penny that she wont let me forget this in a hurry.
In the mid afternoon I walked into town and did some shopping. The evening was fairly quiet and I spent much of it watching a movie. Thursday I left the car and took the train and bus to Norwood – most of the storm damage had been cleared. I spent a few hours there, had lunch and made my way back to the city center. Friday and the car refused to start so I was forced to call out the RAA again. The mechanic examined the battery and that was good and the alternator seemed to be good, but something was draining the battery and we had no idea what. I did have a battery charger with me and decided that if the need arose I would use that, but driving through the center of Adelaide was again scary and I feared at every set of traffic lights. I was glad to reach Gepps Cross, which is the northern boundary of the city and leave the traffic lights behind. Fortunately I had enough fuel to get back to Port Wakefield where I knew there was a good garage if I needed it. I expect there are good garages in Adelaide but I have no idea where. All that surrounded me were FFOs – Fuel and Food Outlets. I used the charger at Lochiel and Port Wakefield on the way down but I did something wrong in Adelaide and drained it, hence the RAA call. I telephoned Annabell to let her know that I was coming
home. She suggested that Benji would be pleased because he had been sulking and hiding for the last two and a half days – poor thing. I was disappointed because there were things I wanted to do on the way to Mount Gambier and in Mount Gambier itself but I felt if I was going to break down it was better to break down on the way home than to break down on the South Eastern Freeway. As it happened the car drove quite well and I was able to stop for a little while in Port Augusta. Tomorrow I will take the car to the garage and book it in for a complete service and find out what the power draining problem is. – Hopefully it’s something simple.