So, what's been happening in Bertie's world since the last post?
We were really pleased with the way the Amazing Spaces Christmas episode turned out. The filming in October was lots of fun, even though it felt a little bizarre being all tinselled up on Halloween. We were then asked to go to the Christmas Party, held in a yurt in Surrey, for the final filming for the show. The best thing about that, was being able to meet so many of the other people who had featured on the series, as well as being able to see the crew again. We spent a fair while chatting with Emma (Lunafloat), Adam (Big Green Bus), Rew (Landrover coctail bar) and the lovely Max (Reestore) - and the children very much enjoyed the indoor play area at the venue!
We weren't expecting to get such a big slice of the eventual programme, but it was cool for us to see the way they'd recut the original footage and mixed it in with some new bits to give an update. Hope you enjoyed it too.
And then we put Bertie away under his cover, and tucked him in for the winter.
We decided it might be fun to go and collect our Christmas tree in Bertie this year - but when we piled in (wearing the obligatory antlers) and fired him up, sadly we encountered the same old
problem with no fuel, no spark, no vroom. Cold and wet are not the friend of an old engine. So we tucked him away again.
The new year has seen a rather major change in our family, which has meant that Bertie has been a bit neglected for a while. In February we adopted a little boy - so now 'a family of 6 and a dog' are a family of 7 and a dog. This isn't the forum to write much about our adoption journey, but in a nutshell our thinking is that lots of kids need families and we have a family to share, so it makes sense to bring those two things together.
We have, therefore, been rather busy changing nappies, making baby purees and picking up soggy rice cakes from the floor - and Bertie has been waitng patiently for us to get back to him.
Meanwhile, spring has sprung here in the countryside - as the view from my bedroom window (on a sunnier day than today!) will show you:
And so now, May half term is upon us, and the baby is a little bigger, and we're ready to head off on another adventure.
Our friend Toby came round and sorted the engine issues for us, at least temporarily. The wonderful Rob Kitchen (from http://www.norfolkclassiccars.co.uk) is away in Africa working on a rally, so Bertie's long-overdue major overhaul is still a few weeks away - but for now he goes, which is good enough for me!
We have been making a few little adjustments inside Bertie over the past few days (having had all winter to do it, clearly we shouldn't have left it to the few days before going away, but there you go). We now have new curtains across the rear doors and the connecting door to the front cab. This gives us privacy in the rear of the van in the evenings when the lights are on - and should result in fewer unsuspecting campers being flashed as we change for bed! I have hung them on net curtain wire, so all that is visible in the daytime are a couple of eyelet hooks in the wooden trim at ceiling height, and then they can quickly and easily be put in place at night. We have a drawer in the kitchen cupboard, and are intending to put a couple of shelves in there today too - pics will follow once done. And generally he's been cleaned and cleared and prepared, and tomorrow will take us on another adventure.