One thing I have learned over the years of going to the farm is to always have a cold bottle of wine in the car fridge, and a wine glass handy in the car. Not only does make it more pleasant sitting around while Doc gets us out of trouble, but it keeps me in a good mood about the trouble he got us into.
Last week the car slid out in the mud on the way in. The only thing that saved us from spinning any further was the trailer we were towing. This week, after another week of rain, it was the trailer that got us stuck. Really stuck. Bottomed out stuck. In the mud, and – I repeat – in the rain. Not just any rain. A full on thunderstorm.
I did the right thing. I got out of the car and had a look. As Doc tried driving out I stuck my head out the window to see which tyres were spinning. I even offered to help. And then I poured myself a glass of wine while he went out in the rain. No use us both getting wet.
First of all he disconnected the trailer then put rocks in front of the wheels to try to give us traction. Nothing. So he put more rocks in front of the wheels. Still nothing. That took one glass of wine.
When the rain starting coming down heavier he sat in the car and bemoaned not packing the recovery gear.
“But it’s all in the car.” I said “It’s still there from when I went to SA. Unless you unpacked it.”
At this stage you might be asking yourself why I didn’t tell him that sooner. First of all I assumed he already knew. Second, as the nearest tree was so far away there was no chance of the winch reaching it, even with the extension, and we had nobody else to snatch us out.
Doc had other ideas. So out he got again. Got the winch extension, snatch strap, tree protector, and various shackles and hitches, and started putting them all together. With the winch at full extension it was centimetres from reaching the nearest tree. A bit of jiggling with the tree protector and he managed to hook it all up.
That took another glass of wine.
Then it was time to see if it all worked. He got back in the car and started the winch. Lots of noise, but no movement from the car. But at least the straps were all holding. He eased off, then tried again. Again there was lots of noise, but this time the car started wiggling. Not moving out of the mud, but at least there was movement. Again he eased off, and had another go.
Push the button on the winch, more revs on the car, and finally, the car moved. Then it got stuck in another boggy hole. But we’d moved and we weren’t as deep in this hole so the next bit should be easier.
Push the button on the winch, more revs on the car, and inch forward. And again. Inching forward again. Then we really started moving. Not always forward, sometimes we were just sliding in the mud. But we kept going until, finally, we were on firm ground.
It was so tense I’d forgotten to refill my wine glass!
But now we had to drag the trailer out as well. Without letting it drag the car back in. That meant walking through all the mud (again) back to where we’d left the trailer to hook it up to the winch. I don’t know if you’ve ever been to a farm, but cow shit makes the mud stink. Really stink. And Doc was already covered in it up to his thighs. And the mud between the car and the trailer had been stirred up by us trying to get the car out. So it stank even more.
Once more, there was no point in both of us being covered in mud. So I poured another glass of wine.
But finally we were out, the trailer was out and hooked up so we could continue on our way. 2 hours after we got bogged. A 3 glasses of wine rescue.
And the worst thing – it was far too dark, and too wet, for me to get any photos or video.