Coffee bay was still 260km away so we decided to stay in Morgan’s bay for the night at Yellowwood Forest Backpackers. Lovely owners that told us awesome stories about their Beetle. How it would break down at the most unsuitable times and how they had to push it more than drive it at on stage. If you read this, it might sound very discouraging but if you saw how their faces lit up when they saw our little red beetle and when they told us their stories, you would feel like I felt: nervous but excited!
Do not get me wrong, I am not saying I am looking forward to breakdowns. Everytime the engine does not start, I get that sinking feeling that this is it, this is where it ends. But somehow Clayton manages the impossible and off we go again.
When Bertus started on the 3rd try the next morning I felt like a proud mom. We got in the car and set off for Coffee Bay on our slow but relatively steady pace. Back in 1972 when Bertus was brand new, he had 60 horse power. Over the last 46 years, quite a few of them escaped. We estimate that about 45 horses were left best case scenario – assuming Bertus is on top form which he is not at the moment. That is the equivalent of a 650cc motorcycle (approximately) which is a lot for a motorcycle but becomes a problem when you put it in a car that needs to move 1.2 tons across a flat surface – nevermind hills! As Clayton describes it: it is very fast down hill, very slow uphill and shit on even terrain.
After what felt like an eternity, driving through settlements and small villages where black pigs of all shape and sizes roamed the streets with the stray dogs, we finally arrived at Coffee Bay. We were greeted by a kid who welcomed us by telling us our car is terrible! The worst he has ever seen. That reaction was still better than the one we had on they way to Coffee bay. We were driving up this hill, slowly…, kids walking our way with buckets in their hands when all of a sudden 1 kid dropped his bucket and started running in the opposite direction. The other 5 followed suit, buckets rolling down the hill and kids screaming and scrambling for safety. It was so bizarre that I looked around to see WTF was behind us and was quite surprised when I saw nothing! Clayton thinks it is because Bertus sounds like a machine gun and the kids were running for safety… I do not know. It was weird. I was traumatized.