Yesterday I did something I have been putting off for almost two years.
I’ve written it on endless lists, talked about it to friends, got opinions from people in the know, and worried about it every single time I’ve driven since I decided it would be a good idea to fix.
And yet it was only yesterday that I eventually managed to take Poppy down to Maldon and get her four new tyres.
Yeah. TWO YEARS.
Now while my old tyres weren’t (quite) illegal, neither were they performing brilliantly in the soggy weather we’ve had recently. Consequently I’ve been worrying about longer trips, and freaking out as soon as I realise it’s raining or icy outside, for the past two years. Not to mention driving people mad with the response “I’d love to, but let me check my tyre treads first…”
And yet it took me a five minute phone call to check the tyres were in stock, a twenty minute drive to a place I trust, 90 mins for them to strip, refit, fit my new alloys and redo the alignment on all four wheels, and a twenty minute drive home (with a two hour pitstop at my Gran’s for tea and biscuits). Less than a morning’s worth of work – and the moment I started her engine to leave the tyre fitter’s, I felt a huge weight literally float up off my shoulders.
So why did I put it off so long? I think it felt scary and expensive, and I think some fear got in there as well – what if I don’t know what to reply when they ask for sizes / what if I order the wrong ones / what if, what if, what if. All while also worrying constantly and subconsciously I was going to lose my licence for having sub-standard grip on my tyres if the police pulled me over. (turns out they were still legal, but close to the limit – so all my worrying was quite literally for no reason.)
And yet to beat that epic round of procrastination, all it took in the end was a reminder from my friend Nic, a phone call, and a few hours on a Saturday morning, and now I can relax and enjoy driving my car again. I feel good, and also slightly sheepish.
A lesson I’m hoping to take into other parts of my life – I can think of another few things that get nudged from one list to another endlessly, and build up to be something more than they are – when they’d probably only actually take a little while to remove from my job list entirely.
What do you needlessly procrastinate about? (Go on, share your stories and make me feel better…!)
With love and unicorns,
PS The garage I used was George Tyres in Maldon – highly recommended (and sensibly priced, as well as very reassuring), if you’re in the area 🙂
I have been ridiculously busy for the last few weeks, and each of the events deserves a proper post. However, as I’ve just arrived home from CAE 2012 (camping with the car club in Yorkshire) and I have washing and other such glamorous things to do, I thought I’d do a bit of a sneak peek with some photos, and link to the posts when I write them over the next couple of weeks 🙂
The first weekend in July, I did a stall at the Maldon Motor Show with the fab Annastasia Midorigreen and her other half Dan – we sold handmade, vintage and Star Wars figures. It definitely gave me the bug and I came home all inspired. The classic cars that showed up (all 700 of them) were amazing too.
Then on Wednesday I flew out to Jersey for my best friend’s wedding. I was one of four bridesmaids and it was a fraught lead up but absolutely gorgeous day, despite the pouring rain. Julia is now a Wilson and it’s still not quite sunk in!
And this weekend I have been to Yorkshire camping with my car club. This is always a highlight of my year – you couldn’t hope to find a lovelier bunch of people, and I always look forward to the meets we have throughout the year. This one is the biggest by far, with usually around 40 cars. Much eating, drinking, talking and laughing goes on…
Friday morning: How many MR2s can you fit outside one house?! (black is Rob’s, blue is Russ’s, red is mine, silver is spare) Anna and I when she arrived, catching up and looking cute:Laughing despite the rain with Ally and Luke: Dan, Brad, Nige, Karine & Jim demonstrating that rain will not stop us having fun…
More on all three later – now I’m off to find food and catch up on sleep!
Bit of a late post, but here goes…
So first of all, CAE stands for Camping Auto Extravaganza. Which should give you some idea of the type of event it is. Last year was the third, and my first. And the first time I’d met the majority of the club members, even though I’d spoken to them all online via the club forum.
In the intervening year, friendship and bant has developed and I now consider them all to be friends and some of them to be close friends.
I had Friday off to get ready and get there, and Brad suggested I join their convoy from Birchanger Green services. So I got there ridiculously early and sat and sunbathed and read a book in the sunshine (and had a sneaky KFC for lunch!) while I waited for him, Jim & Karine and Nigel to turn up.
(Can’t find a pic of my car in the car park )
As it happened the traffic was completely horrific so I had longer than planned to read and chill out, but eventually got a call saying they were there and to head off, and they’d catch me up. Knowing they were all in turboed cars, I did.
And spent the next 30 miles driving as slowly as I possibly dared, letting trucks overtake me and desperately looking in my mirrors for signs of MR2s coming over the horizon! Eventually decided to go off at a junction and over the roundabout to delay myself – got back on the sliproad and they all shot past me! But I beeped and they’d seen me so I caught up, and then the drive got fun! (the traffic was stil horrific and there was lots of stopping and starting, but it’s fun driving in convoy with friends. Jim & Karine livened up the journey by dropping back and chucking jelly babies at us – hit my car but not me, sadly, but the thought was there!
We arrived in Peterborough about 4ish I think, although I was so excited to be there I didn’t actually look at the time. The rest of the afternoon passed in a blur of chatting and hugging and catching up with people, it was so lovely to see old friends, and be introduced to new ones! It was also fantastic to finally meet the people behind the usernames I’d been chatting to for so long J
Michelle and Ian’s place is beautiful, with space for us all and beautifully put together both inside and out. The pool was warm, the hot tub was warmer and they had two BBQs and several fridges for all our drinks J and a BAR!
Friday night was spent munching takeaway, deciding on treasure hunt partners (for anyone curious, this is the closest we got to keys in a bowl, lol – just names in a hat for who drove and who navigated the next morning!) and then drinking, dancing, swimming (Anna and I got in the pool at stupid o clock) and talking. I even braved the hot tub. I drank far too much, to the point where I flashed my floozies (only a little bit!) for Rob and Russ (and Luke – who I then spent ages trying to convince I was normal. I hope I succeeded!) and had an unexpectedly fabulous time – much better than every time I go out clubbing and try hard to have fun. I think I eventually went to bed about 2am, and did that really annoying thing where you try to be quiet and make more noise than you would have done normally. Oops.
Saturday morning was a convoy of all of us, which definitely ranks among the most exhilarating experiences of my life – was such a kick to see so many roadsters and other toyotas all together, revel in the looks we got and know that every car contained a friend of mine J (yeah, I’m a sappy idiot, lol).
My Poppy is the car on the very far end 🙂
Then the treasure hunt was on, and we all met back at the house for a photoshoot and lunch. Look at the pretty cars…
(this pic courtesy of Luke Abbott – I failed to get a decent pic of all the cars together)
Took the opportunity to get a new profile pic too..
Saturday afternoon was really chilled, involving chatting, playing pool, reading magazines and in my case napping *blush*. I came back outside blinking at about 6ish and asked if I’d missed anything. Someone said ‘yeah, you’ve slept so long Amy Winehouse is dead’. Which obviously I dismissed as the usual bant. Then realised it was true and was actually quite sad!
The chilled vibe continued into the evening, only with added alcohol, and I remember sitting at one point by the pool, lit by candles, laughing at something ridiculous (I believe spiderman pants and a drawing of thongs and mankinis were involved) with some of my favourite people in the world and just being the happiest and most content I can remember for ages.
L-R Me, Rob, Wills
Hou in foreground, Anna and someone headless in background
Then we had dinner, then we drank and danced and talked some more, I dropped my duvet in a puddle, we realised it was actually quite cold and broke out the sleeping bags, and I continued drinking and got sleepier and sleepier. We had some ridiculous but wonderful conversational moments (and ahem, educational too) and I gave up trying to stay awake and went to bed somewhere between three and half three.
L-R – Jim, Luke, Wills, me, Beka, Karine, Brad
Anna and I having a silly moment in the hot tub
L-R Brad, Luke, Jim
L-R Jim, Brad, me, Beka
Sunday morning… was mostly full of people ambling around sleepily, talking about the weekend and their plans for getting home. We had an amazing full English breakfast, then people started to wander off. Which made me really sad, actually.
So we said our goodbyes and promised to get on facebook/keep in touch/do this again really soon, and then Anna and I went and spent the afternoon sat in a pub garden talking about how lovely it had been.
Returned home, helped my housemate pack some of her stuff, and then settled down to the flurry of photos, new friends, messages and comments on facebook. Turns out that this year, it’s not just me that’s soppily nostalgic about the weekend and would much rather it hadn’t ended. Everyone’s struggled to get back to reality this week. And I’d like to think that we’ll all stay friends for a very long time, having experienced it together. There’s not many groups of people I could have an entire weekend with without getting seriously cross with some of them at some stage. And I’ve never in my life met so many new friends at once!
Best. Meet. Ever.
And I really hope we do another big one before next CAE – I can’t wait a whole year to see these guys again!
*apologies to anyone reading this who went, my words and photos don’t do justice to how awesome it was.
**apologies to anyone reading this who didn’t go, who is probably bored senseless. But really – if you do one thing this year, buy a Toyota and join us next year!