If you've been reading my mindless blog of babble for a long time you may know that this is not my car. In Episode 23 I discuss how, and why I bought it for Mrs Clint, and how I am not allowed to sell the CR-V, modify the CR-V, or even drive the CR-V! So far, so good, I've not done any of these things, although I did nearly sell it... Whoops! Anyway, obviously I didn't actually sell it (because Mrs Clint caught me in the act!) So we still have it. Even though I've not really driven it, I'm not a big fan of it, it's an OK car, but it's a bit bland in my opinion. It's a car for people who don't really care about motoring, and just want to get from A to B, and to be fair to the little thing, it does do that very well.
But enough about that, today as I was getting my two little monsters ready for school I got this text on my phone, it said that due to the extreme weather conditions school will be closed today! I'd not yet looked out the window and so I thought I'd better check... Hmm... A light dusting of the white stuff. Doesn't look to extreme to me! I informed Mrs Clint of the text, and she delighted in telling me that this was good, as it meant I could drive her to work in the snow. Being self employed means that if ever school is closed I look after our two little monsters, and Mrs Clint goes to what she calls a proper job! So I went outside to brave the extreme weather conditions and clear the snow and ice off the car.
Once outside the extreme weather conditions looked even less extreme than they had from the bedroom window, and Mrs Clints CR-V was soon ready to go, and I was sitting inside with the engine running warming the thing up. Mrs Clint came out, and upon seeing me told me that I was sitting in the wrong seat. I then informed her about her rules, and that the third one of her rules was that I wasn't allowed to drive the CR-V! She then complained that it was a bit snowy and that she had never driven in the snow before. Well, I said, theres a first time for everything, so get in and buckle up buttercup! She got in, and told me that she still wasn't happy about this, but she started to pull out. I turned to our monsters and told them to buckle up for safety! In a rare change of events, they already were! Within about a minute we had left the light dusting of snow that had fallen in our street and we were straight into this...
Hmm... This extreme weather was looking all the less extreme with every passing minute! I can't believe that the closed all the schools because it was a bit damp under foot! The teachers make a big fuss about how you can't take a day off during term time or you'll get a big fine, and then at the hint of a snowflake they close the schools and take a day off themselves! I'm thinking that theres some double standards here! Anyway, before long we were at Mrs Clints workplace, to be fair it was a bit more snowy there, but still little more than a dusting. She got out, and I slid into the drivers seat! What are you doing she asked? I said, well, unless you want to call us a taxi, I'm gonna drive this thing home, and pick you up when you finish for the day! Ok she said, and headed inside... Into the warmth! We headed for home...
Now, as I said, I'm not allowed to drive this thing really. However I had bought something on ebay that I had planned to collect at the weekend, but now I had a forced day off I wondered if I could collect it today. I called the seller up and asked him if he would be home all day. He said he would be, but told me that the snow was pretty bad where he was. I told him that I was going to try to get to him, and I'd phone him if I failed, and was having to turn back. The weather forecasters were warning of life-threatening conditions and said winter was still in control as Storm Emma sweeps in from the Atlantic, hot on the heels of the ‘Beast from the East’ polar front which already had a grip of the country. An unusual red weather warning, the second in 24 hours, was issued for south-west England and south Wales as Storm Emma would be arriving with strong winds, blizzard conditions and possible severe drifting. The warning, valid from about 14:00hrs today (Thursday) until the early hours of Friday, is just the third issued in seven years and could mean that there would be widespread damage, and of course travel and power disruptions. Where was I going? Oh, just about 100 miles into the south-west of England, just the other side of Bristol! I thought about it briefly, it was only 09:30hrs, if all went well I should be on the way home before Storm Emma hits at approximately 14:00hrs. I consulted with my monsters, my eldest wasn't too happy about it, but she said she would go. My youngest said she's navigate, then asked if we were taking the Chev-suzu? I said maybe, but Mummys car is already warmed up, and it might be four wheel drive too! I say might because from what I'd read, most of them were front wheel drive, and if thats the case then the Chev-suzu would be getting an outing. I went and looked...
I spy with my little eye something beginning with 'P'! Yep, thats a propshaft. Mrs Clints CR-V is a 4x4, right then, off we go! I plugged in my sat-nav, plugged in my dashcam, and off we went.
Actually as we left town the roads still didn't look too bad, but my feeling was that they'd get progressively worse the further west we drove.
Coming up on Stonehenge if anything there appeared to be even less snow than there was at home.
By the time this photo was taken we were nearly there, and it was starting to sleet a little.
I have found that for the CR-V the best speed to travel at is about 60mph. Any more than that and it just feels like its screaming. At 60mph it's pretty happy, and in all fairness I don't usually drive much quicker than that these days ayway.
The roads were fairly clear, and after about three hours we arrived at the sellers house to collect my latest ebay purchase! Looking at the CR-V it was much like the surrounding countryside, it had a dusting of snow, although, the stuff on the CR-V was a less attractive grey colour! Money handed over, my new toy placed safely in the boot it was time to head for home. By now it was 12:30hrs, and if the weather forecasters were right, Storm Emma would be making herself known in about an hour and a half, although it was already significantly colder than it was back at home! My too little monsters were hungry, and to be fair so was I, but I told them I wanted to get going a bit as If Storm Emma was as bad as they kept making out on Radio 2, then really I didn't want to be driving in it. About halfway home as the roads were pretty clear, and it wasn't snowing, or even sleeting so we went to see the King.
As we sat there munching on our burgers I gazed out the window, and all of a sudden it started to snow... Quite hard! I told my monsters to eat up as we needed to get going. They looked out the window, finished up and we headed for the car. I think we had got the worst bit of the journey over, as we were by now on bigger 'A' roads, but the snow was laying, so we needed to get moving! Before long the sky had turned a dirty greyish-greenish tinge, and it was getting a little bit blustery.
But by now we were only about 25 miles from BelongaClint, and although it was laying on the sides of the roads, the roads themselves were pretty clear.
About five miles from home and by now it was starting to lay on the roads. But there was no traffic on the roads, and I was just taking it easy. As I pulled into town traffic built up, and it took us the best part of 50 minutes to do the last three or four miles. Now I have to say that having driven the little Honda for 200 miles(ish) I'm still not a fan. It drove fairly well, was easy to keep control of, and really did everything you would expect a car of this type to do. But it is a pretty mundane thing to drive, and, probably more importantly for me atleast, I found the seat was pretty uncomfortable after about an hour sitting in it! But as I said before, the Honda CR-V is a car for people who don't really care about motoring, and just want to get from A to B. My feeling is that when they were designing it they probably had old people in mind as there target age group. I think they probably aimed it at the newly retired and older set, and to be fair to the little thing, it probably suits them very well.
But, and I would never have known this if it hadn't snowed. After collecting Mrs Clint from work she wanted to go to Tesco to get something for dinner. I pulled into the empty car park, and Mrs Clint and the monsters got out. I told them I'd wait in the car as they were only getting a couple of bits. No sooner had they gone inside Tesco when I thought that I'd try playing in the virginal snow that had covered the empty car park. Now I was expecting that when I was throwing the car around it was going to go all front wheel drive on me and understeer horribly. But it didn't, instead it sent the most power to the rear wheels so it would oversteer. Better still, it oversteered in a very controllable manner. The weather forecasters had got it right, there was severe drifting going on! By the time Mrs Clint and our monsters came out I was like a snow drifting king! I was properly impressed with myself, Mrs Clint however was not! She told me that I shouldn't be playing with her car like that. I told her that I wasn't playing, I was practising! She said that it just looked like I was having fun, and not practising. So I said, well, you can have fun while you're practising, learning can be fun! Mrs Clint disagreed, so I went on and said, remember before we had kids, how we used to practice making children? That was fun wasn't it? This is the same thing!! She didn't really have an answer to that, so I'm chalking that up as a WIN for me!
Arriving back at BelongaClint she got her bag of shopping out, and I went to the back of the car to get out my new toy...
Where did you get that she asked. Oh, I said, Bristol!! You mean to tell me that you've driven my car to Bristol and back today she asked. I picked up my Flying-V guitar, looked her straight in the eye and said, No, of course not... I'm not allowed to drive your car, you know that!