© NZPocketGuide.com
© NZPocketGuide.com

Campervan Disaster – Day 21

© NZPocketGuide.com

Day 21 on the Road

Finding Out That Our Campervan is a Piece of Sh*t

Today’s activity on New Zealand’s Biggest Gap Year turns out to be a disaster when we find out that we have bought a piece of crap as a campervan…

Alright, how do you start recapping that day? Today we’re leaving Raglan to go to Hamilton where we have an appointment with Phil’s Pain and Panel to sort out the holes of rust that we have just under the driver’s cabin or the chassis area.

So we’re doing a little bit of work then we head on the road to Hamilton where we are going to meet up with Phil the panel beater who we met last week to give him the campervan and get those couple of small holes fixed. Now, he said I will probably need two days and this and that but I fully expect him to just open it, bash a few holes and be done in a couple of hours so we can be on our way. But just in case we’ve planned a couple of days there. Today we’re going to the beautiful Hamilton Gardens wooooo! …. [Laura’s nonsense]

We drop the campervan off at Phil’s. They’re like: “Sweet. We’ll see you later. We’ll give you a call when it’s done or whatever.” So yea, now obviously we don’t have a vehicle anymore so we’re not driving to Hamilton Gardens. One second we are are like lalalala skipping down the walkway and the next moment Robin gets a phone call and he picks up the phone and it’s Phil from Phil’s Paint and Panel. And all of a sudden, I just see his face drop and he’s like: “Owww, you’re scaring my, man, you’re scaring me, you’re scaring me.” Saying this down the phone to Phil. All I can tell is obviously there is something majorly wrong with the campervan and I’m running through my head like oh shit what could it be this time? Is it totally like ruined that we can’t drive the campervan at all anymore? I don’t know what’s going on.

So I wait for robin to get off the phone and literally, we are at the entrance of the Hamilton Gardens and the last thing Robin says to Phil is: “Ok, we’re going to take a cab from Hamilton Gardens and come straight back.” I’m like: “OK, then I guess I’m never seeing the Hamilton Gardens.”

He’s saying it’s totally rotten that he doesn’t even know where to start. It’s a really big job. We shouldn’t be driving it all. Just come back here and I’ll show you under and it’s completely completely rotten. So what are we going to do? I don’t know.

We are making our way down to Phil’s Panelbeater. The first thing he says when I get out of the cab, he sees me get out the cab, he walks out the shop and looks at me and says: “Man, who did you buy this camper from? Because this is a big piece of shit.” He takes the Toyota logo panel off the front of the van and reaches his hand up behind the fibreglass panelling on the front and just rips loads of rusty pieces of shit from underneath the campervan. So basically what looks like has happened is this van has one time failed it’s Certificate of Fitness because of rust issues, which they’ve asked VTNZ who gives out these Certificate of Fitness has asked the previous owner to sort it out and come back when it’s all sorted out. But it looks like they’ve just painted over it and said: “Yep, that’s fine.” Since then, it has passed it’s Certificate of Fitness meaning that this authority that gives out these Certificate of Fitness deems this road-worthy and safe and legal to drive on the roads and that’s obviously what we though when we were buying this thing. We are buying something that we know has been deemed worthy to be on the roads so it can’t have much wrong with it. But Phil is telling us that all this rust behind here, if we are ever in a crash we’ve had it. there’s nothing protecting the driver’s seat of the passenger’s seat – it’s just rust. Which is crazy! And also before we bought our campervan as we have advised so many people to do is to do a pre-purchase inspection which is a professional mechanic looks all over the vehicle. you can have these done for any vehicle in New Zealand and they recommend whether to buy it or not, what needs fixing and you know, so you can make an informed decision on whether to buy something or not. And Truck Stops, that’s the place and did our pre-purchase inspection, they said that yep, there’s just a few minor issues that we’re happy to sort out for you which they did. We paid them to sort out the minor stuff that needed doing. Otherwise, it’s safe to go. They thought it was a good deal paying what we paid for it and they recommended us to buy it so. So we’ve gone through the right steps to do this but not only has one major company in New Zealand completely failed at doing it’s job, but another major company Truck Stops, that do the pre-purchase inspection also failed at their job and now we are stuck with a bill of about 3,000 [NZ] dollars. So yeah, I can’t believe that people care so little about the lives of others. …. [Heavy dramatic sigh]

This is the part where Robin starts hustling. This is what Robin does. He is good at sorting shit out. He always helps sort other people’s problems out and now he’s going to sort our problems out. We are going to keep on going and I’m going to spend the whole afternoon on the phone trying to find a solution. So I’m calling one person, I’m calling another, I’m calling another person, I keep on calling people until I find someone. And the lovely Jucy comes to save the day. They said yep, no worries, we’ll give you a van for a couple of weeks so you can keep on travelling and when you’re van is fixed just bring it back to us. And I’m like yesss thank you guys! So I’m booking a bus for tomorrow. I’m going to get up to Auckland, grab the van and come back to Hamilton and pick up Laura. So now we have a plan, we can keep on travelling. The only change to our plan is that for the next couple of weeks we need to stay in the area so we can go back to Phil’s if needed and pick up the van on time so we just going to have a bit more time to explore the area.

Why is he peeling off our fucking campervan. Look at him.