News item

Car trouble - By Jules Frints

Austin, October 15, 2016

We woke up in the locker rooms by the football field in Ozona, where last night we watched the game and showed our motorcycle. The battery packs had to be picked up at the high school and at the principles house. After that, we left on our way to Austin, the capitol of Texas and a 350 km (or so) drive. Because of the shorter drive, the plan was to take a small detour, and also to have our lunch all together at a certain point. We left Ozona, and within a few miles some cars took a wrong turn and had to catch up again. Then, the unfortunate combination of events occurred that the battery truck drove in front of the motorcycle and lead car, while the latter two missed the exit. The battery truck had to drive half an hour extra to the swapping point, while the rest of the team waited at the lunch location. We left at the swapping point and immediately the motorcycle missed a turn. No big issues, but it clearly wasn't our day, for the matter of navigation.

Anyway, the team was together again at the lunch location, although a bit later than planned. After lunch, we started our engines again, except for one. Truck 3 had a flat battery, so one of the cars had to jump start the truck. Again, no success. Another car, no success again. We tried to use Truck 4, our jumper cables broke! They were not of the best quality anyway. Some cars already left to the sleeping location, while we slowly charged the truck battery using one of the cars. After some time, this fortunately worked and also the last vehicles left off again.

After the relatively short remaining drive, leading through the Texan countryside, we eventually all arrived at the location. This was a contact of Gary from Las Cruces, and it definitely was a great place to stay. Claudia and Matt, the people living here, let us stay in their guest rooms, and we could use their pool, hot tub, garden, camp fire on gas and finally, they prepared a barbecue for us! Besides, they were very kind and we had nice conversations with them and Gary, who flew over from Las Cruces. We ended the day in downtown Austin, where we explored some of the bars on 6th street.

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