HelenEdith's Blog

The minutiae of my life, plus website updates and book reviews

A Large Purchase, or how Stephen’s eyes were very nearly larger than my car boot

Posted by HelenEdith on June 16, 2009

I've folded the handle down, but it's just not enough

I've folded the handle down, but it's just not enough

Stephen and I went to the Wrotham Steam and Vintage Classic Rally last Saturday. As well as the usual attractions of steam engines, tractors just like Daddy had from the 1950s onwards, stationary engines, and classic cars and bikes of all ages, Wrotham boasts a considerable number of stalls. In fact, there’s an alley there which resembles a well-organised car boot sale.

I spotted a cat carrier, which we paid for and promised to collect later, but I quickly gravitated towards the arena to view the classic tractors being paraded, while Stephen lagged behind in the area where money could be spent, and didn’t surface up near the arena until about an hour later; and when he arrived, he told me he’d bought a lawnmower. 😯

I was a bit sceptical about a purchase that large fitting into the boot of my Nissan 200SX, but Stephen was absolutely confident that it would fit.

When we started getting footsore, we decided to visit the burger van for some sustenance and then visit the car to have a sit down. We collected our purchases (once we’d found the right stalls 🙂 ) and took them back to the car, too.

That was when the fun started.

My misgivings about inserting a lawnmower into the boot of a sportscar were borne out when Stephen folded down the handle of said lawnmower and tried to load the implement into the boot without any success. The handle simply wouldn’t fit through the hole that is the aperture into the boot of a Nissan 200SX.

That's the idea! Undo the brackets so the handle will lie a bit flatter

That's the idea! Undo the brackets so the handle will lie a bit flatter

So it was on to Plan B.

While I stood guard over our marooned lawnmower, Stephen went back to stall alley and purchased a shifting spanner for a very reasonable price. So armed, he returned and proceeded to dismantle the brackets that the handle attaches to. They were conveniently held by two nuts each. [No comment about the one who purchased a sports car and the one who expected to stow a lawnmower in the same. 😀 ]

Look, no brackets. It's bound to fit now.

Look, no brackets. It's bound to fit now.

Soon the lawnmower, minus its brackets, but with the handle still attached although now floating free, was ready for another attempt on the boot.

Hmmm... This is still bigger than the way into the boot. I know there's enough room if only I can get it inside...

Hmmm... This is still bigger than the way into the boot. I know there's enough room if only I can get it inside...

We were very nearly foiled again! The top of the engine stuck on the back of the boot and just wouldn’t slip inside.

That was when we thought to check the level control and discovered that we could get the wheels in much closer to the body.

Yes! That level control was a charm. Retracted the wheels and in she slipped!

Yes! That level control was a charm. Retracted the wheels and in she slipped!

Thank goodness for that! It went in – and the boot lid would shut, so we didn’t need to go back to stall alley and purchase an octopus strap.

However, we still had another large purchase to stow: the cat carrier. Stephen thought it most unfair of me to record his struggles with the lawnmower, so he forgot his disdain for Pentax and relieved me of my camera and told me that he was getting his own back while I got the cat carrier into the car.

This cat carrier *should* fit on the back seat

This cat carrier *should* fit on the back seat

It really wasn’t hard at all: front seat tilted right forwards, and just a little twist and the cat carrier was in!

Ah yes... Front seat right forward and turn the carrier just a bit to one side

Ah yes... Front seat right forward and turn the carrier just a bit to one side

I’m not sure about that little twist if Boonie or Sam had been inside: maybe if we have cat transporting to do, we’d better take Stephen’s Reliant Rialto with its superior load-carrying capabilities!

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2 Responses to “A Large Purchase, or how Stephen’s eyes were very nearly larger than my car boot”

  1. Buff said

    I refrain from asking why the Hell he wanted a lawnmower, but … And as if some inanimate object could foil Helen’s genius form working out a problem! Ha! I do hope he felt silly when you can up witht that little twist!!!

    • HelenEdith said

      He wanted a lawnmower because he’s been using the same one in two places and wanted to lose the hassle of having to transport it. He did discover once he got the height adjustment all the way down to get the lawnmower into the boot that it wouldn’t go up again, but says that even once he’s obtained the necessary spare part that the lawnmower was still a bargain…

      As far as the cat carrier was concerned, I had no doubt that it would fit on the back seat, as we have had a fairly similar sized carrier (with cat inside) on the back seat before. 🙂

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