Introducing you to Martha! She is a classic VW T25 Camper Van and the replacement for The Catavan. I decided that my lovely Catavan was not really practical for what I wanted to do – i.e. drive the N500 coastal route around Scotland. They do not recommend that you do that route in a caravan!! And I want to do it in winter as well! Also with the best will in the world and unless you are the very skilled caravan tower Andrew Ditton, you really do need a second pair of eyes when you are towing. So I rehomed The Catavan to the most lovely couple who I know will love and adore her as much as I did. So lucky to have found them.
Then I set about looking for a Camper Van – a bit of a daunting task when you don’t really know that much about engines and you have a miniscule budget. I read up virtually on every guide to buying one ever published on the Net. Then after a week of searching I saw Martha. I called the seller even though I was pretty sure she had probably been sold already. I was told there were two other people coming to view her but they took my number just in case. And then a miracle, they called me back the next day and asked if I’d like to see her! One of the viewers had given the impression that he wanted to break her up for parts and the other was still trying to make up his mind. So I met up with the sellers and all that research went out the window when I stepped inside her! Pure gut feeling! I was in love. Graham and Sandy her lovely owners showed me all around her – so much storage for such a little girl. I couldn’t believe how well designed she was. I did the test drive remembering to ask how to get reverse on the gear stick (the number of times I’ve been stuck in a car trying to work out how to get reverse!). I loved being up high as well, did I mention she has power steering? Perfect. She also has a bike rack and a new awning, oh and only 60,000 miles on the clock!
So I sat down and had a chat about her. Graham and Sandy had named her Martha after the track Martha, My Dear from the Beatles White album. She’s been all round Europe, she has a fantastic collection of stickers on her ceiling, she was also the wedding car for their son’s big day. They made me a cup of coffee using her cooker and a collapsible kettle (how cool is that). I got so much useful information from them about where to go, campsites, wild camping, radar keys, rechargeable shower gizmos etc. and the most important one – use gas powered hair tongs when you are off grid. So I paid a deposit there and then and they said they would deliver Martha to me the following week which they did and now she is all mine!
She is obviously going to continue to be Martha and I’ve even made her a CD with all Beatles tracks on it including her name track! I took her to a VW specialist as I had a problem with starting her a couple of days later (my fault, not Martha’s) and he tuned her up and ran tests and tweaked a few things. I also bought her a set of new shoes (tyres) and my VW expert gave me the ultimate compliment “You bought a good one there”. So chuffed to hear that. I trusted my gut and seeing Martha and meeting Graham & Sandy just felt right. BTW if you ever need a VW specialist for classic campervans and cars etc. try Doug’s – VW Werks, Angmering, West Sussex. What that man doesn’t know about VWs isn’t worth knowing plus he also helps run the Stolen VW Register. All round good guy.
So the next step is to introduce her to my Poppy. I think they will get on well together. I bought a lovely purple sheepskin rug from a charity shop for her. She can burrow into it and snooze or whatever when we are on the go. Have also got a hooded cat litter tray as she does have a tendency to have a right old fling about when she’s doing her thing in it.