Episode 63. Jaguar S-type. X667 HLB. (Part 4).

Mrs Clint had headed off for her lesbian weekend with a couple of her friends this weekend, and that meant that I was left without proper adult supervision. Without proper adult supervision means that practically anything might happen. Many moons ago, when Mrs Clint was away on her lesbian weekend I was left in charge of our two little monsters, and had been told by Mrs Clint not to do anything stupid. I enquired as to what might be a stupid thing to do. Mrs Clint said, Oh, I dunno, like buy another car! I told her not to worry as I had no car buying plans for the weekend. My plans for that weekend were to take our two little monsters on a train ride as they'd never been on a train before! So we walked to the station, and hopped on a train! To cut a long story short the train was so packed, and the journey was hot and miserable, that when we reached our destination we chucked our return tickets in the bin, bought a car off a used car lot and drove it home! Mrs Clint chalked that up as a fail, but I thought it was a win!!

So, Friday night Mrs Clint headed off for the weekend, and I was left in charge of our two little monsters! She no longer tells me to not do anything stupid as by now she knows that it pretty much falls on deaf ears! I wanted to do a bit of work on BelongaClint before I did anything, so that took care of Saturday. This morning I was up bright and early and asked the monsters what they fancied doing? Their request was simple, can we go out to eat? I said that sounded good to me, I like to eat, just ask my bathroom scales! But I wanted to take the Jag for a run, so we'd go for a bit of a drive and then find something to eat, what did they fancy? Burgers or something was the reply. So I said, how about Hot-Dogs, because I knew a great little Hot-Dog stand. I said that it was a bit of a drive away, but that meant I'd get a drive in the Jag, then we could eat! Hot-Dogs sounded good to the monsters, as long as they didn't contain real dog meat! I told them that I couldn't promise that as frankly, who knows what meat is in those things, but they'll be tasty no matter what! They were happy with that, and I plotted a route...

Now, this little Hot-Dog stand I knew off was a fair old drive from BelongaClint... About 160 miles away! Nevermind, I wanted to go for a bit of a drive so we jumped into the Jag and hit the road. It was a chilly old morning when we left, but wafting along in the warmth of the comfortable heated leather seats was just what I was needing to help chase away those Winter blues. For me, there is something lovely about driving this car, with the exception to the colour there is nothing I don't like about it. The ride is smooth, and effortless, and it's quite a relaxing thing to drive. I sometimes find it a bit odd that I have a fairly powerful 4.0 litre V8 engine under the bonnet, but never use its power. Instead my right foot barely rests on the accelerator pedal and we glide along the road. In what seemed like no time at all we had arrived at our detination...

Cap'n Jaspers at the Brabican in Plymouth! I stumbled across this little place about 25 years ago when I was on holiday with my Brothers and Cousins while we were doing a lap of England! I've been there several times since, and whenever I find myself in Plymouth I go there to eat. My eldest monster had been there before with me, but my littlest monster had not yet had the pleasure. The first time I went there (with my Brothers) we all tucked into the Half Yard. This is pretty much exactly what it says, its a Hot-Dog which is half a yard (18") long. Um, I guess that's 45.7 Centimeters long to you metric types! Incase you're thinking that doesn't sound like much, heres a photo of it!

It's BIG! It's also very filling! The first time I went there, when I was with my Brothers we all ate our Half Yards and then were awarded our badges that proudly annouced you were in the 1/2 yeard club! After eating them we were all pretty full, but me, being the eldest said, Oh yeah, I could eat another one of them easily! So they bought me one, and then watched me struggle to eat it! I did eat it all (and even got a second badge!) but it wasn't easy! Anyway, before long my two little monters and I were sat at a table in the chilly air about to tuck into our food. I have only ever had the half yard there so I wasn't about to break with tradition, but my two little monsters just went for a Sizzling Sausage roll each, and we all washed it down with a nice hot mug of tea too! The damage to my bank balance for this magnificent feast came to £10.65! Sorry, that should probably read just £10.65! To put that into perspective when we go to Starfucks and have a couple of Hot Chocolates and a Latte it costs me £7.85, and that's without having anything to eat! Cap'n Jaspers is far better value... Even if it does mean a 320 mile round trip!

As we sat there filling our faces while we looked at the view across the harbour I got to thinking that this was a great day! Yes, probably a bit foolish driving 160 miles just to get a Hot-Dog, but what a Hot-Dog! As I sit here writing this, nearly eight hours later I am still not yet hungry! As I said before, good value for money! But not just that, but to get in the car and just go for a drive in the country, there's so much to see in this country of ours, so why not get out there and drive around it! It costs so much to insure and tax our cars so we can drive them on the road, it makes sense to drive them as often as possible to get your moneys worth out of it! 

After a quick wander round Plymouth to try and walk some of my half yard off before it was time to head for home. I splashed another £30 of go-go juice into the Jaguar, and stocked up with something I'd not seen in a long long time...

Victory V's!! I've not had these in ages, and promptly filled the drawer in a dash with them! This is clearly what that drawer is for, these things fit that drawer like a glove! I must admit that as much as I liked them, and they now carry a slogan that reads 'Forged for strength' on the packet, they don't seem to have the same kind of kick that they had when I was a kid! Of course, this may be because my memory has faded, or my tastebuds have changed. Or, and probably more likely it's that they no longer contain the ether, and chloroform that they used to! Actually, I'm being a bit melodramatic here, it wasn't really chloroform, it was chlorodyne, which is a rather soothing mix of cannabis and chloroform! Far better! It's probably why when I was a kid all the old folks carried them and gave them to us kids... Probably kept us all chilled out and qiuet! Gotta watch these old folk, I thought they were giving us sweets, but it would appear they were actually getting us all stoned so that they could get a little peace and qiuet! With my two little monsters chatting away and arguing over what should be being played on the stereo I thought that I might see if they still had any effect on them at all. I handed them the open packet and they accepted the Victory V lozenge with glee... Breifly! Before too long they were questioning me about what I was trying to poison them with? I said that I wasn't trying to poison them at all, and to prove the point I popped a couple more in my mouth! But they weren't having it! I did get them to crunch them up in their mouths so that they might experience the full flavour, which to be fair to them they did... Just before rolling down the windows and spitting it all out as we drove along! My feeling is that without that chlorodyne, and ether the kids of today are never gonna get hooked on them like we did as kids! I reckon thats something that Ernest Jackson & Co Ltd of Devon, who are now the manufacturers of them might need to take into consideration if they are to encourage kids to eat them nowadays!

On the way home, and to apparently to help take the taste away of the delicious Victory V's I told the monsters that we could have ice-cream by the beach, y'know, because it's ice-cream weather! I detoured into Weymouth, and we collected three small tubs before heading to a little cliff top car park I knew of.

As we sat there eating our ice-cream, out of the wind in the warmth of the Jag I got to thinking that although, we'd not really done anything other than drive all day, we'd had a great time. We'd been out, so they've not been glued to their tablets all day. We'd eaten things that we didn't usually eat. The monsters had tried a new thing (Victory V's), and even though they didn't care for them atleast they'd tried! But most importantly we'd been together all day, and we'd had a great time. We talked about all kinds of stuff, and laughed, and laughed! All in the luxurious comfort of the Jag. I realise that it had cost me £60 in fuel, and maybe another £20 in Hot-Dogs, drinks, ice-creams and Victory V's, but so what? £80 all in for a great day out, thats not bad value is it? Plus, I've been a bit bunged up lately as Mrs Clint likes to bring colds home from work and share them with me, but now, after a packet and a half of Victory V's I feel like I could breathe through my ears! As an added bonus the interior of the Jag now has also taken on a sort of 1970's old mans car aroma, which sort of takes me back to being a kid! I think it just needs some old Woodbines in the ash tray now! Actually, I think I can live without that added aroma!

But as we sat there watching the Sun dip below the horizon I was wondering how many more trips out in my lovely Jaguar S-type we have left. When I bought this car over a year ago it was supposed to be a temporary fix. I'd had the S-type with the V6, and I just wanted to try the V8 to see what it was like for a couple of months, but really it has got under my skin! I don't really want to sell it even now after a year of motoring in it I'm still not done with it, still not bored. But I think its time for a change. Infact I know it is because I have already purchased it's replacement. The thing is, having driven the Jaguars replacement, I just don't enjoy it as much as the Jaguar. It hasn't got the power, which to be honest is fine becuase I don't use all the power the Jaguar has anyway. But it's not as luxurious as the Jaguar, probably not even as roomy. It's certainly not as good looking as the S-type, infact, pretty much the universal feeling is that its a very ugly car. However, it is a car that I have wanted to own for a long time, and actually I kinda like the controversial styling of the thing. But my feeling is that the S-types replacement isn't a long term keeper, unless it really grows on me. However I feel like the S-type could be, or atleast, could've been. Like I said before, with the exception of the colour, there's pretty much nothing I don't like about this S-type. I've thought about moth-balling it, and just putting it away for a couple of years. But the trouble with this is that what tends to happen is that you pop it in a garage, and before long you've not even looked at it in over a decade, this is how barn finds happen, and I should know, I've got four or five cars just waiting to get re-discovered by me! One of them I put in the garage because I wanted to work on it over the winter, and that was in 1997! Anyhoo, I guess what I'll do with the Jaguar for now is hang on to it, see how I get on with my new purchase, if I start to gel with it, then sell the Jaguar, if not, then sell the new car, and just jump straight back into the Jaguar. I don't know, I'm quite undecided, but I think that one thing is for sure, either way it probably won't be my last S-type!