Power Brakes and Brauer Breaks

While staying at 4 Hillside Road Parktown we prepared for the holidays. I was taking the delightful Cheryl Forsdick down to Port Shepstone in Natal where I think she was meeting her folks, the redoubtable Ginger and Mrs F. It was the grey and grey Opel Concorde OHS 5678’s longest trip and at the last minute I started to worry about the brakes. They weren’t the best. So I toddled off to the spare parts place and bought what they said would fix them.

21st birthday present!! An Opel Concorde DeLuxe 1700 in sophisticated tones of grey and grey. Note my reflection in the gleaming bonnet!
21st birthday present!! A 1965 Opel Concorde DeLuxe 1700 in sophisticated tones of grey and grey. Note my reflection in the gleaming bonnet!

The day before we were to leave I stripped the drums and put in the new shoes (does that sound right?). It was a fiddly job and took ages to get right, the springs kept springing. Testing them entailed many trips up and down Hillside Road (luckily a cul-de-sac) jamming on brakes and screeching into the left gutter, going back and adjusting them and then slewing into the right gutter. Then beertime came and it had to be good enough.

A raucous year-end party ensued and unfortunately Brauer had invited himself. So even more beer than normal was swallowed and cleverer and cleverer. In the wee hours he spotted the grey and grey Opel Concorde sitting sleekly in the driveway, poised for its long journey to that last outpost of the British Empire. His drink-addled brain (brain?) had recently been thinking (thinking?) about the Mercedes “pagoda roof” sports car classic and he decided my car needed a conversion, so he danced on the roof and the more sensible people told him to stop the more he danced. You know how he is.

He thought he was doing this (and in fact suggested I should pay him for enhancing the Opel):

merc-pagoda

But in fact he did this:

opel-roof-brauer

I had to lie on my back on the seat and push up the roof with my feet the next morning so we could sit in the thing for our southward safari. Was careful to use the brakes as little as possible all the way through the Vrystaat vlaktes, down van Reenen’s Pass and on to the sparkling Indian Ocean where the sharks (but not yet the Sharks) were awaiting their annual dose of Vaalie flesh.

Author: bewilderbeast

It's about life, marriage, raising kids and travel in Africa . . . re-posting thoughts written over decades - at random, I'm afraid.

3 thoughts on “Power Brakes and Brauer Breaks”

  1. Killed myself laughing and reposted to the Brauer family who think the kids have the edge on being party animals. It is definitely a BRAUER gene as he disgraced himself recently at my nephew’s wedding. Fortunately no cars were damaged in the process.

  2. Steve Reed said: “The Concorde lives on in my memory screeching round the corner into 10th Avenue in Durban to take Wendy to hospital on Stacey’s birth day.”
    Note: The Concorde got there in record time in the wee hours of that morning. Stacey, however took her time and was only born many hours later that day.

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