Forget Friday 13th - what about Tuesday 13th? Part one

Ok, so the day had started well (see previous post) but even the most beautiful things can die quickly and suddenly.

We had a meeting in the department capital with the Chambre de Commerce to register our business. We decided to combine this 50km trip with a sightseeing trip, and a trip to the supermarket to buy some wine and beer to take to the party in North Wales we were going to at the weekend.

So half an hour before the meeting we load up wine and beer into the van. The engine starts first time and I put it into reverse gear and pull out of the parking space. I go to put it into first gear and the gear stick won't move. I try again. Nope. Won't work.

I turn off the engine and am able to put the van into gear and pull off with relief. But can't change into second. I turn the engine off and put it into second. Start the engine.

The time is now moving towards the meeting time, and we drive around the town in 2nd gear looking for a parking space. There aren't any. We end up much further than we want to be up a side street, hot, sweaty, arguing and on the verge (well, frankly we drove over the -metaphorical - verge and into the nearby field full of cow pats and stinking bogs) of tears.

We march up the hill and have enough time for several deep breaths and to concoct a rudimentary plan of how we would get home, before entering the chambre de commerce.

And that was when things took a turn for the worse...

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