So two weeks ago I did probably a quite moronic thing; I bought, sight-unseen, a horse trailer. The photos looked great (a rusty door but that's easily fixed), I'd already sorted out local storage at a good price (I'm not telling you where for security reasons!), the shape was lovely, the colour was perfect. Only a couple of minor problems - primarily it was in Birmingham and, even if I had a car which could tow it (the wife's Qashqai possibly could, but depends on whether you're measuring actual or gross weight), I don't have a B+E license. I've signed up to do it but there's a queue...
No worries! I called Gareth at The Mobile Landlords and arranged a date - the seller agreed to hold it till a week on Saturday when we would rock up in Gareth's Navarra and pull it home. I messaged the seller the night before to confirm we'd be there about 8:30 - no response but that's not unusual... although just as Gareth arrived the next morning at 7:30 having driven all the way from South London I got a message - I'm not in today, the trailer is blocked in, come tomorrow!
So obviously, I'm not happy and the seller stops responding. Again. I called in favours and found a friend of a friend that had a tow bar and a big car. He called the seller and arranged to go up on Sunday evening. Somehow the seller took 40 minutes to pull the trailer down to where he was waiting and... the driver refused to pull it. The tyres were soft, he didn't know if the lights or breaks worked - not risking his license and drove away. Oh. My. God!
As an aside, a friend has a Mk2 Golf GTi he recently had to get delivered from Oxford to Banbury on a flat bed and was happy with the service that he got from Pete the delivery man. Flat bed? Well that's another problem. Despite still getting no response from the seller I sent a message 'my new delivery driver will be in contact' and told Pete to just call him, arrange it and let me know. Next thing I know, Pete's driver calls 'I 'ave your trolley, I be 90 minutes'.
Ninety minutes? I've got to do the dancing run - I'm tutoring - I have the youngest - the wood delivery is due - I... I... I... I'll be there!
Swapped cars with the wife, through the 6yo in her pajamas in the car seat and drove over to the storage facility. And waited. And waited... it was raining... it was foggy... it was getting very close to the 7pm lock-up time... and... IT ARRIVED!
Not only that, it arrived on the tow hitch, not on the back. "Oh you towed it?" "Pfft, yeah, 'course. Why not? I just had to put some air in the tyres." "Brakes ok?" "Sure." "Lights?" "Sure."
So, she's now snug as a bug in a rug in her new home; first thing is to rip out the bits inside and get the angle grinder on that door panel (and a hammer on the dent), then sort out the floor plan.
- Seller : 1/5 for rubbish (and I mean rubbish) communication.
- Working with mates of mates : 2/5 - Nice guy, but his refusal put mate and I in a bit of an awks situtation. Luckily we're big boys and can take it.
- Pete's towing : 10/5 - I don't think he has a website but if you need something moving around the South Midlands / North Oxon area, drop me a line and I'll send you his number.
(Don't worry about the grumpy bunny, she didn't think there was enough room inside for people to sit. She has now been educated and is bouncing about the idea!)