Generosity of heart

There are times when I am driving my VW bus that I get a bit frazzled. It might be that the weather’s too hot and I wish these old vintage buses had a fan, or it might be I am trying to turn round in a tight space and I wish I had power steering, or it could be that the battery is behaving badly and I have to do a push start, yet most of the time I have been very lucky and Dexter, aka “The YesWeCan CamperVan“, behaves very well indeed.

Yet on the odd occasion when I have really needed help, a kind VW soul has always turned up, like a knight in shining armour, yes really. You only have to look at the THANKS page to see that’s true.

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My latest encounter with a generous heart, was at the very top of California about a month ago, as I was bringing a “new to me” VW bus down from Oregon. I had been worried that the seat belt was inoperable because it was rusted in and could not be adjusted. Here I was driving hundreds of miles south on Interstate 5, with no seat belt, and as I approached the town on Yreka, the concern resurfaced. It was a significant moment because way back in Dec 2009, Yreka had been my first stop on my first day of taking Dexter home to Massachusetts. So I checked the time and I thought I’d make a brief stop for old time’s sake. Seeing a VW from the highway, I decided to head in that direction in the hope there might be a VW shop and that they might have a spare belt. The young man excitedly told me he had just purchased his first VW, a beetle, but his was just a private garage, and that I should try a VW mechanic further along the same road. When I found David Medeiros, he was working on a Westy. He didn’t have a spare seat belt so he looked at my driver’s seat to see if he could slide it back, which would make the extra room I needed for the belt to fit. Using a hammer and screwdriver he worked for a while but the seat was too was rusted into the runners and impossible to loosen. Try as he might, it would not break free.

David wouldn’t accept any payment for his time. After swapping a few VW stories and looking at the nice bus he was working on, I said cheerio and got on my way.

David’s generosity of spirit made me feel a whole lot better,  and afterwards I found I was much less concerned about having no seatbelt.  I wanted to add his name and address here. If you are ever passing near Yreka, CA, and are in need of an experienced VW mechanic and a good person, give David a call:

David Medeiros,  D & D Auto House,
1488 Fairlane Road, Yreka, CA.
1-530-331-3303

Yreka VW mech David Medeiros

 

Camping in the Redwoods – Part 2 – enjoying Bus City 2014

Remember that start mileage from Part 1 of this story?

Here’s the arrival reading, showing we drove only 112 miles to Schoolhouse Canyon Campground. A tiny trip for The YesWeCan CamperVan

Why then did it seem longer? Probably all those stops (Petaluma for Tillamook buses, Sebastopol for Citibank, Bodega & Bodega Bay to see where Hitchcock filmed his thriller “The Birds”, the Russian River view and Guerneville, peaking at the women’s festival, Community Church and Radio station, stopping at ATM Bank of America for camping fees, and shopping at Safeway for beer and early morning coffee).

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We knew we were in for a treat in Guerneville, when we met the Safeway store security guard at 5.30am Saturday and she told us if we needed any help at the checkout, we just had to oink the pig. “It’s the best way to get attention from the people filling the shelves”, she said. Okay!!!!  Oink, Oink!!

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Gotta say, this reminded us of the other pig in a store way back in 2009, some 25,000 miles ago, at the very start of our travels in The YesWeCan CamperVan (read that story here – photo caption ‘Pigs do fly in California’).

Anyhow, back to Guerneville ….. after a short drive out of town, past Korbel, we eventually arrive at the Schoolhouse Canyon Campground.  The VW Camper Family’s 6th Annual “Bus City” is in full swing. VW’s camped all over under huge redwood trees. Which spot to choose, we wonder?

And then a friendly wave beckons, and we move into this welcoming space, with two beautiful vanagons and a Toyota Forerunner (just like the one Carole drove in 2000 on her first ever coast to coast drive across America).

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Three very nice women, Ginny, Connie and Barbara, welcome us.

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And then we notice other members of their VW family … these little chihuahuas…..

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with a VW bus all of their own, which they happily share with a couple of bigger dogs, too …

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The next door neighbour, Thom, is from the same area as us. His recently acquired canoe made his bay window look quite the adventure wagon 🙂

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Thom’s wife, Amy, created a banner for “Bus City 2014” which she asked us all to sign …. I think many forgot!

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Carole left me to chill out and rest in the shade of the redwood trees ….

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while she went over to the picnic table ….

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to see if she could help with breakfast preparation.

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She brought strong cheddar cheese, a great addition to eggs.

 

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Had not quite imagined frozen eggs though.
Dang, those vanagon fridges must be powerful!
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Nothing beats VW camping gals! After a little thaw, the scramble is looking pretty good and the end result is yummy!

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After this proteinaceous breakfast and warm company, Carole toddled off to look for the creator of this event (now in it’s 6th year). She’d met Big Blue online in 2010 and couldn’t wait to meet him in person.

“Big Blue” was easy to spot

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What a great plate !!!

Also love that riviera pop top ….

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Quite a few more pop-tops around in the Redwoods ….

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and other ways to keep cool inside one’s VW camper …..

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Our favourite one, though, is the dormobile roof from GB (sorry for the bias). Look at that little vent – isn’t it sweet?

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Lots of bay window buses and vanagons, here, yet only two split windows – a little different to the events in southern california where splitties often prevail.

This split window has a hippy paint job ….

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and this green and white one ….

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had been newly painted the owner told us.

Well, after all that bus spotting and photo taking, it’s off  to the river for a dip …

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A welcome space to enjoy the redwoods, birds, butterflies, and river … and time to play

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a welcome chance to cool down

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and enjoy one’s VW family the old fashioned way 🙂

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After that adventure, tea back at camp … (happy sigh….)

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… more time to visit ….

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and play

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and swap tips on better ways to camp.

A battery operated fan – great for a bay window with no fan of its own 🙂

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a mini portable grill/BBQ

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and ingenious methods for attaching awnings to VWs; it’s all in the spirit of the wonderful VW family 🙂

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Time also for Carole to hand out our VW4Causes sticker ….

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One here on the Toyota. Thank you Connie 🙂 (don’t you just love that reflection of our campervan in your rear window too!)

Then Barbara with the lovely vanagon …

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let us put one of our stickers on her colourful rear window (thank you :)) ..

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… just before she got packed up and ready to go (you see, the doggie house has gone)

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Going around to say bye bye is never easy  – campouts always seem too too short …

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All gone!

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Nothing left to do now except move The YesWeCan CamperVan to a shady spot ….

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get out the tea tray ….

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put on the kettle …..

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make some tea and think about England 🙂 🙂 (just joking)

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Here’s to Bus City number 7 !!!!!!!

To get more info on this event, simply join VW Camper Family by clicking the link on this website. Go back to top of this article, scroll down left column, look for VW blogs header and you’ll find VW Camper Family listed there.

If you enjoyed reading this story, please would you help us with our cause by helping us reach 2000 page likes on facebook. We’re up to 1,796 at the present time. Just click here and once on our VW’s page, click like or join. THANKS 🙂 

 

VW friends’ blogs

Newly spotted today – a blog from Zenbus (a 1984 watercooled Vanagon Westfalia) called “The Zen Bus Adventures”

zen bus blog

Such a  good read! Make sure you take a look. 

Look also at our other VW friends and their blogs under our ‘VW blogs section’ – scroll down our left column to find a wonderful variety, including: 

PLEASE send us any others that you see out there in VW land, by posting below! And please tell your friends about our blog, too.

Thanks 🙂

Joining the Sacramento VW community for Ranch Run 2013

What a time we had in Sacramento the first weekend of May – VWs, nice people, having fun and doing good. There’s no better combination.

Ranch Run poster

For more information see the Ranch Run website … http://www.theranchrun.com/

Ranch Run 2013 website

The Ranch Run website describing the VW community’s support for the 2013 event in aid of local charity ‘Ride to Walk’

 

It was a hot day! I managed to find my old hat buried inside my VW and our T shirt from last year’s cross country drive for MG Awareness and VW4Causes …..

Doing my bit as one of several VW drivers in "The Ranch Run 2013" for Sacramento charity "Ride to Walk"

Doing my bit as one of several VW drivers in “The Ranch Run 2013″ for Sacramento charity ”   Ride to Walk”

 

What kind of events and charities have you and your VW club supported?

Let us know by commenting below and inspiring us with your stories. Thanks.

VW stories from way back when …

After this photo appeared on VW Bus Junkies – Classic VW Bus Owners and Fans … it had received almost 90 likes by the time I saw it today a week or so later …

VW vintage with 60s band

I apologize for not being able to give credit to the photographer of this great picture; source was not shown on VW Bus Junkies facebook page.

John Kleckner commented ……

“My brother used a ’57 and hauled the whole band out to Eastern Long Island in ’65 to open for Mitch Ryder. I used my ’58 to haul a Hammond B3 and 2 Leslie speakers [yes they fit] with other stuff. [’57-8] Both were 36 HP, and made it to many gigs!”

If you have any colourful stories to share from the 60s, please add them in the box below …. thank you!

MERRY CHRISTMAS from the VW world

MERRY CHRISTMAS from the VW world 

from VW christmas tree decorations ….

VW bauble for Xmas tree

Dr Pepper VW BEETLE Tree Gift

Pepsi Cola VW BEETLE Tree Gift

…. to VW Christmas cakes …

VW Bus Cake + Peeps

…. who knows what you might wish for ?

VW Bus Santas

…. after all, in VW world, anything is possible 🙂

VW with Reindeer - Xmas Wish

MERRY CHRISTMAS from me

and from my VW bus

The YesWeCan CamperVan !

If you’d like to send us a special Christmas gift,                                 we’d love you to  click here on our highlighted                                    The YesWeCan CamperVan 

This link will take you to our VW Facebook page, and                  when you get there, please like our Page …….. then share            this request with your friends, too.

   We are trying to reach 2000 ‘Page Likes’ by year end, and we’ve a long way to go. If you could help us reach this target, it  would be a wonderful gift from you to us and many others, because you’ll be helping us reach more people with our educational messages through our work at VW4CAUSES 

Thank you!

P.S.
Even Jesus agrees – see below 🙂

(thanks to VW enthusiast Ryan Bautista for this photo) 

VW Jesus Xmas Tree decoration

4 Bays, 4 Splittys and 1 Ghia

QUESTION: What happens when 4 Bays, 4 Splittys and 1 Ghia get together?

ANSWER: A great atmosphere and support for our cause!

Thanks to the Paintscrapers VW club who came out to the Island Gardens Park …

VWs in the Park, photographed by Sharon Read, edited by Carole Brown.

… and thanks to my green Brazilian splitty, too, here seen in close up …

For more about this wonderful photo shoot in London see http://vw4causes.org/2012/10/21/iod-photoshoot/