Cold and very grey weather.

The perfect weather for the Farmer to make a fence.

Peaceful and so unlike much of modern life. We spend far too much time in places that vex us. Places like Garages….. No wonder many of us are are so tired.

There can’t be many more inspiring settings to spend a couple of your precious hours than a GARAGE WAITING area 🤯😳. In this case a GARAGE kinda feeling like it’s perpetually stuck in a Downton Abbey Filming Set – that’s the lower class pleb part of the story line. This Garage feels like it hasn’t changed in decades, will never change. A waiting room definitely stuck in time. I dread to think just how many countless cigarettes and coffees been waiting for a re . Filled with ancient sofas that consume you, you instantly sink to the ground, while at the same time, rather unnervingly you start to stick to the fake once black leather covering.

So last week I found myself in this strand old place, the poorly Mercedes Sprinter Van was in need of some seriously expensive fixing. All beyond me, so I just said ‘I’m not paying, WORK is, just do it, I’ll wait’

So that’s what I did, WAITED. The unfortunate mechanic assigned to repair our rusting heap of metal said that you can get WiFi in the waiting room but you’re much better off going outside and sitting on the wooden fence. There you can use the neighbouring furniture store’s WIFI which actually works. Apparently all you need to do is to remember the Store’s wifi password. Brilliantly that password is PASSWORD.

It was far too cold to sit outside, so I opted for the waiting area.

A few moments in the waiting area suddenly made that cold wooden fence look rather appealing. Here I was surrounded by Giant Posters of Red Italian Sport Cars, all driven by what appeared to be genetically perfect models. This all helped to creat an interesting aesthetic mood, lavish car culture stuck onto a grimy yellow wall covering that might well have been white once, probably way before I was born. AND in the corner a Coffee Vending Machine, another item that looked way older than me. It wouldn’t have looked out of place in Dr Who’s Tardis. The hot drink names lovingly hand scrawled on bits of moth eaten card, randomly attached with cellotape to layers of dust. But it’s FREE. Try the Continental Dark Roast then. The machine slowly whirled into action, then the noise. It sounded like that terrifying basement boiler in Home Alone. Better stand back. That drink is not very black or coffee like. It’s RED. It’s tomato soup… Having tasted it, I wasn’t so sure. Maybe.

Few moments later I was joined by another customer who I noticed went for the milky tea option on the Vending Machine. Same noise. And the culinary result was confirmed by the confused chap saying “bloody thing has given me tomato soup”. Next customer (victim) opted for the Hot Chocolate and yes got the inevitable SOUP result.

It had to be done, I braved the vending machine in the interests of science. What happens when you press the Tomato Soup option. Yes more soup. All roads lead to SOUP.

As I was flicking through a luxury super car magazine (while struggling to finish two plastic cups of soup), I was joined on this particular sofa by another confused soup drinking customer. After a nervous soup related conversation she informed me that her ‘JAGUAR’ was getting a headlight fixed, what was I in for.

“One of the three Mercedes is playing up…”

She seemed strangely fascinated by a banged up van.

‘What’s it like to drive, is it fast, I’ve always wanted to drive a Mercedes’

Why would you want to drive a white van 🙄🙄 “it’s not great, really slow, dreadful handling, like driving a super tanker, always breaking down. In fact the Ford is better.“

She looked seriously disappointed.

‘Oh really, I thought they would be fantastic, I was thinking about getting one but I think I will stick with Jaguar then or look at BMW.”

It was only after she had driven away in her newly fixed Jaguar Sports Car that it dawned on me. Mercedes… OH. She thinks I was talking about a Mercedes high performance sports car, not our 10 year old completely driven into the ground Mercedes Sprinter Van. A van that might have sprinted once but those days had well since gone. Even Lewis Hamilton isn’t going to get that thing sprinting.

Opps sorry Mercedes, I think I might have cost you a customer.

77 thoughts on “Van wars

  1. Yes. The mention of Mercedes, particularly here in the US, will perk up ears. “You have a Mercedes? Want to have dinner?” Symbol of wealth.

    We don’t have vending machines that provide soup. Coffee, yes, hot chocolate, yes and hot water for tea but, soup? At least not in my state.

    I had a Ford van, once. It was an extended chassis and had a queen size bed in it. My ex did some conversion work on it and it became a travel van. Later on, it was a party van when I gathered friends up for rock concerts. Miss that thing…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I recall a Bedford van as a child and we (three kids) got to decorate the inside of it with pink paint. The stuff got stuck in my hair and on my clothes. It is an awesome memory, up until when I got home and mother wasn’t pleased with my new 🎀🩰 pink look.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. LOL! Yeah. Kids & paint…very close to kids & dirt. Fun memory. Thanks for sharing.

        My van wasn’t painted, other than its boring, white factory paint job. My ex covered the inside with carpet…even the walls & ceiling. I had to help hold things in place. Very sound-proofing, tho… My shoulders ached for two days.


  2. Laughing my head off at this post. It’s been a while since I have seen a vending machinr that offeres soup, so going by that and your description of the noise it made it must be a classic machine. 😁
    Tea was always the option I went for in a vending machine. And I did get tea.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh man, how I used to love the thick vegetable soup from Autobar vending machines. I can remember the taste, the thickness, the little bit of gloop/soup powder in the bottom of the cup that hadn’t been mixed, the heat and having to blow for ages… Yup, I’d go for that crap 🥤
      right now.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. You brought a big grin to my face and I decided that my third blog post for the day (yes three in one day, just because) that I would post one called SOUP 🥣 and tag BABASP your it:



  4. But how was her German? 😆

    Oh, this was a funny conversation and it’s amusing how things sometime get mixed up in translation. Oh well, Mercedes is not sending you any more soup, I’m afraid, Gary. 😆


  5. That’s really funny. I can visualise the waiting area…I have experienced a few just like it, though I was never brave enough to try the drinks machine. Getting tomato soup in lieu of coffee would be a bit off-putting. Lovely when it’s what you are in the mood for, still… I once found myself drying a Mercedes which a hire car company had assigned me. It was the one and only time I drove in England. Had my parents in tow having flown overnight from Miami. I was delivering them to their new home which I had been charged to find for them. Stress had new meaning. But the car was well-behaved. I was terrified. Thought I would be forever going around the roundabout at Heathrow!


  6. I had no idea that Mercedes made vans – had to go a’googling to find it. I knew they made buses and trucks, but didn’t correlate that to ‘vans’. Seems quite feasible now that I think about it.
    That aside, it can be quite nerve tingling whenever one needs to visit ‘the garage’ – generally means lots of dollars exchanging hands (mine or yours to theirs) in order to get the car back… 🙂
    Soup in the vending machine sounds a little scary! How long has it been there? Was it made hygienically? Are good quality ingredients used?
    Way too many questions for me to drink it. I’m feeling a little overwhelmed… Think I’ll pass on that if ever I come into contact with one!
    On the bright side – I’m pleased you got your van fixed; even though it cost a small fortune. Bit of a mixed blessing really… 🙂


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