Tuesday, September 30, 2014

9/20/14 Day 247 Pushing Poly over the edge on Hvar Island

We drove with haste the two hours to Drvenik where the ferry would whisk us away to Hvar, we barely made it, being the third from the last they scooted Poly into the very corner of the ferry and in no time we were maneuvering her out onto the island. The very first cove that Kevin had found through Google satellite maps turned out to be a steep, scree covered and jagged descent to a solitary cove with just one German couple and their VW Transporter Synchros van basking in the nude. We spent some time admiring the blue waters and black spiny urchins before it was time to head for the next beach. Now the task of getting back up the hill. Kevin, Casey, Dan and I awaited eagerly for Poly to climb the hill, but when she just wasn't having any of it we climbed out and awaited her to ascend with just Kevin, still nothing, at this point we are beginning to realize something is definitely wrong. By the time the German couple offered to help pull us up the hill with their Synchros van our car is barely turning 
over :-( they tow us to the top and what's more insist on towing us all the way to Stari Grad 80 kilometers away on a beautifully windy hilly road and it was getting dark! They would take no repayment of even gas money for this huge favor they did for us. It absolutely blows my mind the generosity we continue to receive day in and day out of our travels, so much good karma! We sent Dan and Casey off to enjoy Hvar city on the other side of the island while we camped out to wait for the first tick of the work day clock the next morning. At 8:00 we were first in the door at the auto parts store. Super luckily for us the guy working at the shop keeps fuel pump relay switches In stock because his car has the same problem, this could be the answer to all of our woes! He also suggested that hitting it with a wrench usually does the trick. Back at the doorstep of Gale Auto just an hour later bummed and baffled, not even the wrench could fashion a fix. So our next step is to wait for the auto mechanic at nearby Rudan auto to show up for work. Apparently not much of an early riser we went out for an espresso and waited for a more fashionable hour to walk into his workshop where we were not acknowledged for 5 minutes while he silently put away his tools, he finally looked up at us standing in his tools end sized workshop while Kevin started spilling all of the details. No reply, except to ask where the car was, he then walked to his car, and assuming we were invited we jumped into the passenger seats. After thirty minutes of tinkering with less than a dozen words exchanged and no solution, except that the car needs to be towed to the shop, a small 200 kuna tow, for 2 kilometers! No thanks we will keep those 30€ and find a way to get the car there. Since the business was obviously not his, he sympathized because 200 is a lot of money for such a short distance and he left to try to find a tow rope, (our car is so small almost anything can tow it). When he still hadn't returned three hours later we took matters into our own hands and were about to push Poly the 2 kilometers to the shop when a Range Rover carrying two Germans pulled up next to us, I politely asked if they would be able to do us a huge favor and tow us to save us a few hours of really difficult work and in no time we were parked in front of Auto Rudan, listening to him explain to us over the phone that he had gone home for the day, and it being Saturday wouldn't be back until Monday. *He could have at least told us that he was done for the day instead of leaving us waiting 4+ hours for him to return with a tow rope at this point! We would have Loved to have gotten the car towed hours earlier and spent our afternoon at the beach. Apparently consideration isn't really in his nature though as we come to learn.* We agree to meet him first thing Monday morning so we can get off of Hvar Island. We arrive a bit later than we had hoped Monday morning, 10:00 instead of 9:30 and he is under another car changing brake pads and a wheel bearing, surely he would be with us in no time after all we had an appointment. We patiently waited in our car 2.5 hours while he barely gave us so much as a nod. He finally finished what he was doing around 12:30 and began to focus on Poly...*would it seriously have been that hard for him to say oh I am going to be awhile why don't you grab a coffee and come back at noon* A quick hour later and a new fuel pump is on order all scheduled for our third appointment with Auto Rudan at 5:00 the following day when the part would arrive. Fast-forward to 5:30 when Kevin, tired of waiting around for this flaky mechanic makes his way to the auto part shop and calls the mechanic who without even apologizing offers to show up around 7:30 because he is on the opposite side of the 100 km long island (this is the breaking point we have spent the entire weekend waiting on him) so Kevin buys the part (which happened to be wrong, but could be jerry-rigged to fit well enough) and installs it before sunset and we are off, without a dime going to the ridiculous and time insensitive mechanic. Long story short auto Gale was a complete waste of our time, luckily Kevin is a jack of all trades and can fix anything!

Ferry terminal at Drvenik

A stowaway on board
Arriving at Sucuraj
The beautiful beach that almost ended our amazing car

Getting towed for 80 kilometers on crazy curvy roads, I thought our brakes would burn out for sure
Ahhhhh the Synchros, the German man put it well "Synchros goes up everything"

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