Nephew’s seal of approval

We’ve finally told our family and friends about Ruby! Here is a photo of our nephew seeing a photo of her. He kept shouting “camper van” and “nice wheels!” at the screen.

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Here he is with his toy camper van that Susie gave him. He loves it!

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A run to the coast

The promised gorgeous weather held, so after the liberal application of Autoglym Interior Shampoo to the seats, we headed off to Blackpool for a drive.

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The trip started with a bit of excitement, as we realised that the key we had left with the garage owner who stores her is the only one that opens the petrol cap. So we had to take a trip back to swap keys. Ruby has many keys, all opening a different door. Whilst stopped at traffic lights in Preston, a guy took Ruby’s photo with a big grin – could she be a Instagram celebrity?

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We started at North Shore and drove down the front. Even off-season, Blackpool was fairly busy with people enjoying the sunshine, and lots of people, particularly children, giving Ruby a big smile and wave. We got lots of smiles and waves, particularly from other VW drivers. We saw a T25 on the front and a couple of T5s in Lytham. On the way home we saw a gorgeous beige Beetle near Lostock Hall, but no other splittys today.

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We parked up in Lytham to enjoy the late afternoon sunshine and take a few photos whilst the light was nice. Cowardy Custard here also took the opportunity to drive Ruby in a very gentle circle of the car park, around an RAC man with a wry grin on his face, who probably  could imagine the conversation going on in Ruby’s cab: “Wow – this steering is something else, isn’t it?!”

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Unfortunately, due to my age, and a hefty insurance claim after vandalism and airbag theft from my Fiat 500 a couple of years ago, I cannot get cover on classic car insurance. Yet. Which means that it is up to Rooobarb to do all the driving, and I get to be in charge of music, refreshments and photography. However, I am going to take the opportunities to drive on empty car parks and campsites when I can, so that when the insurers consider me a risk worth taking, I can hop behind the wheel with a little confidence.

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We finished the trip with another brief stop near Fairhaven Lake to get some photos of Ruby wistfully looking out to sea. Rooobarb reminisced that he has photographs from the same car park of him and a friend kneeling in front of Barney the 1976 Beetle many years ago. He was happy to stay inside the van on this occasion.

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Then, it was back home to load up the last of the camping gear that has been sitting in our dining room all week, a quick trip to the jetwash to blast off the road grime, and then we snuggled Ruby back safe in her garage, to rest for our next adventures.

Happy days!

Happy Ever After

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Well, that’s it. We’re all married now and set to trundle off into the deep blue yonder to have adventures in our campervan.

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People have chosen their parts of the van to name, so at some point we will be attaching labels to them all and taking photographs so that people can see what they’ve bought.

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But for now, here are some of our lovely wedding photos, by the talented and lovely Susie Forster, who is not only a great photographer, but a massive VW camper fan, so automatically earns lots of extra cool points!

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Vintage Retro Kitsch

Another inspiration from my reading over at Junkaholique was the thought of using vintage suitcases in the camper for clothes and bits on the back shelf.

With this in mind, I got in touch with lovely Sarah from Vintage Retro Kitsch to see if she had anything suitable. We popped over on a Sunday afternoon to look at the wide array of cases she had stashed away, and came away with this one:

2013-02-03 07.46.10(Apologies for the frankly awful picture quality, but we came home to discover that after a power cut caused by the thawing of the snow, we had an electricity “brownout” (reduced voltage) for nearly a week, so the lighting wasn’t great in the evenings, and during daylight we were both working hard to pay for Ruby!)

2013-01-27 22.32.12It was very tempting to buy two, as this one is navy blue (believe it or not) and Sarah had another similar one in brown, but we wanted to check on how it would fit on the shelf first. Having put it in the van yesterday (and completely neglected to take a photograph. It was dark by that time anyway!) there is room for a second without stacking them, as this would call for fitting jail bars ASAP, but to be honest, I’m not sure if we need another. We have got a lot of cupboard space. But also a lot of camping stuff that I completely forgot to pack away yesterday.

What we need is a nice warm weekend where we can experiment with taking things in and out of cupboards and working out what belongs where. It needs to be warm, as I’m more inclined to look for proper storage solutions when I can feel my fingers and toes!

The next three weekends are fairly stacked up in terms of other commitments (if you can call going on your own hen do a commitment!) which means any van stuff we do will be, well, without the van! We have the old curtains here, having given them a good wash, but they have seen better days and I intend on replacing them with some made from lovely fabric from Fabric Rehab, Fabric Inspirations or Spoonflower, along with matching tablecloths and bolster cushion covers. I may need to enlist the help of Rooobarb’s mum though, and that would entail telling her that we’ve bought the van…

We also need to spend some money – a cover from Just Kampers is on the shopping list, as are some fairy lights (essential, obviously), a leisure battery charger, a spare set of keys need cutting, and at some point we’re going to need to replace the quarterlight window seals and handles. Which then makes us look at the door handles and the grab handle in the cab and wonder if they’d look better in chrome to match the handles on the quarterlights. Yeah, I can see how this gets expensive!

I was not paid to plug anything here. I’m just posting about things I like. All opinions are my own.

VW love in Northern Cyprus

Sorry the blog has been a bit quiet of late, Rooobarb and I are now officially Mr and Mrs Crumble (thanks to DubMinx from the SSVC for that excellent moniker!) and wedding stuff has got in the way of important stuff, like VWs.

Except, whilst in Northern Cyprus, getting hitched and having a honeymoon and stuff, we kept our eyes peeled for VWs. We saw quite a few Beetles being driven around (especially bright yellow ones, oddly enough!) and even found one for sale:

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We saw a couple of bay windows in need of some TLC (and parts) parked near to the main road to Ercan airport, but I thought I’d hit the jackpot as we were driving near Alsancak, and yelled the familiar refrain “SPLIT!”:

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Or maybe, just a bay that’s had a nose job…