Woke to the sound of the wind in the trees, birdsong and Chris and Moose punching funnels.
What Followed will go down in history as one of the biggest days on van tour. A slight delay involving a tip truck, a powerline, and some lights and the vans first hostpital visit, the road trip was on, Whalerider, Happydaze and The Mess express, even a police roadblock a small gas station incident and a missing window couldnt slow the convoy down. Freecamping, shihad and a slack jawed oozy hillbilly stuck head first in the rocks where he stayed for half an hour. Big ups to leitchy with a flawless effort behind the wheel.
Drove through Albainia and Serbia to Croatia, absolute mission, took us 12 hours to drive 250km, had to deal with pot holes you could swim in, bugger all signposting, random Albanians with donkeys and hay bails the size of a small houses on the moterway, good experience but definatley a once off.
Albainia apart from the roads had the potential to be a beautiful place but was so far run down the main road was more of a goat track in most parts. Cammo had a small run in with a traffic cop in serbia but got into the bribing, which seems to be the go in these parts and got back on the road for 30euros. Boys got into sum moterway beer exchanging. Some more bribing on the border and an early morning arrival in Croatia, free camped over looking Debrovnic.
Met up with the HappyDaze van ( Cookey, Moose and Shane) Camped up at Kalmi beach. 4Kings, handcuffs, elderly dutch women isnt that weird, bb guns, underwater and boat funnels, tent breaking.
Agrino to random beach on the Greek coast, free camped right on the beach, another choice barby, wicked sunset, good facilities in the hotel behind us.
Arrived back in Athens, The boys that could walk visited the Acropolis also known as those posts. Random tortus. Ron and Leitchy took the helm and drove the rest of the struggling crew to Pickey paradise number2 the greek national water skiing centre in a small town called Agrino, wouldnt be a pikey paradise without wild dogs.
15th - 21st
Apart from Ron and Leitchys 2 day trip to Santerini, no photos and bugger all memory was recovered from the 6 day van reunion party. Memories that were recovered include: Nude sammons, All Blacks game, Yagisand general rampant boozing and showering
Limped into the ferry teriminal carpark, van running so rough have decided to set up a pikey campsite in abdoned carpark and try get to a mechanic on the Monday.
Afternoon of pikey games, ( tire rolling, steel throwing and flog the dog) to kill the time.
Sorrento to Brindisi, full day on the road. Whalerider hardly running had to flag the ferry. Roadside beer bongs, and moterway toilet block useage.
Visited the Burried City Of Pompei.
Drove to Sorrento along the Amalfi coast, camped up and meet some Itie birds, Mamamia.
Visited the Burried City Of Pompei.
Drove to Sorrento along the Amalfi coast, camped up and meet some Itie birds, Mamamia.
Drove to Napels, ran into the local marfia and forced to leave, free camped in truck stop, near Pompei.
Vatican city and the sistean chapel, another night at camping Roma.
Coliseum, the Patheon, tomb of the un noun soldier, and a few un noun pubs with a lovely view of the Coliseum.. Back to camping Roma where Lietchy acquired some gravel rash, and a couple of the boys did some Whaleriding.
Arrived in Rome. Chilled out by the pool to a bit of fat freddys. Bumped into Leitchs friends Chris and Liz from back home in the good old Kumeu. It is a small world aye.
On to Florence to see the famous Duomo (big ass Church). We started towards Piza it was high octane juice all round and double strength for Leitch. Well it really is on THE PISS. Ron brought a cheap watch he need to know the time for a week lucky thats as long as the watch lasted. Then we were down the coast towards Rome
Into Venice for a little walk around. Great little place bit of a maze which Nick,cam and Chris found out the hard way. Climbed a tower saw Croatia from a distance. Lots of dirty pigeons and very expensive internet 8 euros an hour. Smell a bit off too. Back on the road that night. Roadside again
Drove rest of way to Venice. Modified the van for free camping, also mounted the red neon lights and that wasnt the only thing that got mounted.
Drove to Milan. Went to the Da vinci Museum. The fashion was smashing not really much else. Apart from the smallest carpark in the world that still has a bit of the whale rider on the wall to remember us by.On towards Venice, stay roadside again
Early start on the road when through Cannes and Nice, stopped for the afternoon in Monaco to admire the finer things in life. Saw some super yachts yep they were big. Apparently our tanned and toned bodies where a bit much for the Monaco streets big cops told us to cover up the police had gay uniforms
. Later in the day statue action was sponsored by gin guards we cross into Italy
Went of the AirBus factory which was several hundred Km out of the way only to find that the tours where booked up for the next two days. Oh well shit happens its not like we are in a hurry anyway. Saw one from a distance yep its big Next we set our eyes on the world largest bridge, yep it was big too. Back to the coast to stay the night roadside.
Drove north out of Spain toward Andorra stopped at a beautiful lake and hired a boat for a few cliff dive, choice bomb and a aqua. In Andorra we found what must be the cheapest booze in the world 2 euro bottles of gin 3 euro bottles of vodka. With the whale rider now fully stocked and the suspension straining we headed into France a place that would be great if all the French moved somewhere else. Stayed the night on the road side just out of Toulouse.
Granada to Valencia
Boys all pretty much recovered cammo getting an easy run. Stop in at Alambra for some palace appreciation.
Had a day around the town, headed down to the Americas cup Village, Had a beer at the loaded hog (very random) listened to some kiwi tunes and gave the boys a big cher when they headed in from there days training out on the water. A samlon was spoted jumping in the viaduct.
Valencia to Barcelona,
Big day on the road. Nick and Leitchy got it dry when there macoroni cheese turned out to be a plate of old cheese and 5 pieces of stale bread pretty good value for 6 euro really.
Caught up with the Hit Takers at a campsite just out of the city.
Nick Chris and Cammo headed of early morning to Paris for the Rolling stones concert.
Boys had a day out with the hit takers, Hormanimal laying some ground work with a hot blondie b4 mogs left the hitting and did some taking.
Boys had day around Paris before an epic concert.
29th July Barcelona
Day of Gauldi Appreciation and an evening of Gordans appreciation.
Tavaira to Sevilla
The Tiki tour around town in 40degrees almost unsettling the boys, before finding campsite and winding down poolside. Kel and Kristy ( flaties from London) poping in for a visit.
Leitchy, Ron, Mick and Amy return from Morroco. We have fluked the timing of our visit to Seville and arrived over the festival weekend. Head into town for the street party and flamenco dancing.
Ron and Leitchy get a present from the 3rd world and spend the day and night spewing and shitting like champions, not good at the best of times the 40degrees really making it a character building few days for the boys. Others just run some sangrias a few salmons and a marlon, poolside with Spain supplying an aray of freaks for some quality people watching. Boys get value for money with riverting boat cruise, Kel and Kristy head of.
Sevilla to Granada
The boys starting to come right no sign of solids though
Stop in at the Alhambra ( huge palace overlooking the city) cues to long, decide to park up and head back in tomorrow, find campsite cut into the hills.
Mick does well with meat supply mission into town, good kiwi barby in the hills of Granada. The Morocco effect jumping ship and giving Cammo 6 hours of free pouring action.
*Boys doing it tough with a terrible day of wallowing in crystal clear water and fighting for room on the beach amongst skimpy bikinis and ice cold big bots.
* Boys pack up and head of round the coast to Tavaira for some prawns free camping and mozies.
*Finally find the part number for the exhaust but cant get it ordered in and fitted for at least 3-4 days at all the garages in town. Bumped into the Belgium girls and headed over to island just of the coast of Tavaira for the night. Restaurants and bars littering the beach, very cool place.
The return of the Whalerider.
2 boys hired a car and burned back to sort out the old girl, proving very easy and very cheap to get her sorted. So with cheers from the boys and the other vans whale rider rolled into Largos. Had a bit of a welcome back party for her. Nick deciding that if he tied the keys to himself there would be know way he could possibly loose them, yea well down to last set.
The welcome home party carried on with some solid beachside action. Hizie joining Ron on the cuddling front, speaking of Ron the mullet and mo are still in dazzling form
Leitchy and King headed of to Morocco in Mick and Amys van, the couple that picked up 2 of the boys in the amazing race and have ended up cruising with us.
After a busy few days the other boys decided on some relaxing beachside.
The Whalerider support crew of Hizi and Lang left the boys to carry on there too dry tour of Europe, solid work boys was a pleasure catch ya soon.
Leitchy and King do Morocco:
Leitch and king drove down to Gablitar with Amy and Mick which is part of the UK go figure. Place is just a bid ass rock on the southern tip of France. stayed the night there.
We found out that the ferries dont go to Africa from Gib anymore so back over the border to Spain again and on to a town called Terrifa then a 35 minute boat ride to Tangres in Morocco. After a 35 minute walk though a city that look like it had defiantly seen better times we arrived at the train station and grabbed a train to Casablanca. Casa was a bit of a dump to be honest but hey at least it cheap.
Walked around Casa markets and Leitch kept getting approached to buy hash one guy offered him a whole KG the same wanted to buy Amy off Mick for a 100 camels and 10 kegs of hash we laughed but he wasnt joking. At that we thought if might be time to leave Casa so back to the train station and off to Marrakech. That night we dined on snails, sheap head and seafood, with the best thing being the sheep head by far King lead the charge on this one we was like a kid in a candy store.
Went on a sarfari to a waterfall in the atlas mountains on the western end of the Sahara desert. This walk fall might have been good if you were an arab that grew up in the desert but this couple of kiwi boys had seen a lot better in good old NZ. Caught the overnight train back to Tangiers which was hell people getting on and off the train at all hours of the night. King went to sleep and woke up to find nice pair of grotty Moroccan feed on his face.
Crossed back over the ditch to Spain and drove up to meet the boys in servile on the 21st.
10th July Day in A Coruna
Bar to population ratio is very encouraging. Nick headed of with Daina to Porto for a few days. The boys found a bar that opens out onto the sand, and a bar policy of free poring gins into huge red wine glasses. ( free pouring is definitely the new black and involves the bar staff bringing the bottle or bottles out to the table and free poring until you need 2 hands on the glass to tell them how many fingers strong you want it. Good afternoon and evening at the free poor bar and a mission home.
11th July A Coruna to Porto, the home of Port.
Caught up with Nick and found campsite in the middle of town. Amazing city and the boys spent the day cruising and taking it all in. Splashed out on a boat cruise, huge contrast between the old and the new parts of the city, very cheap eating and drinking and very welcoming people as long as you make it clear from the start that you are from N.Z and you are not Poms. Very hot local girls.
12th July Porto to almost Lagos
The call was made to make a run for it and head for Lagos for huge beach party and a catch up with all the other Vans. With Cammo at the wheel and King keen to prove his critics wrong with the map Whalerider cut a path down the Portugease coast the boys partying it up in the back the 3000 watts goin for it. One of the best days on the road the crew has had until 70km North of Lagos the party stopped as Whalerider spluttered and ground to a halt. With the distributor points fried the boys had about as much as Leitchys mum jokes, Nick and Hizi hitched into the next town, finding a garage that was closing for the weekend, a tow proved pretty hard to come buy so it was barby and a few beers and a night roadside for the boys.
13th The amazing race
Chris and Cammo hitched into town with a crazy driving local who turned out to be bloody helpful. Very small town Portugal, absolutely no English, drawings, sign language sum more hitching and a mad flyblown mongrel dog and the boys got a tow sorted for the van.
The garage was closed until Monday, but meet an old lady who took it upon her self to look after the van over the weekend letting us park it up outside her place right next to the garage telling us that she would shoot anyone who tried to break into Whalerider.
The boys grabbed a day bag and the amazing race was on, 7 boys in a hitching race to Largos. Nick King and Cammo landing the ride of the day with straight ride to the campsite in largos with to lovely Belgium girls, the other boys coming in over the next few hours. Beach Party all good.
14th July Beachside
Spent the day beachside, a few cliff jumps and some catching up with the other vans, Mashed, Fukrwe, Thomas the tanked engine, mashed, van wilder, L.D.V some classic groups of guys L.D.V having 14 people crammed into a van smaller than ours. Crazy nightlife with beer bongs at the bar.
Paid our respects to Ricardo and the Whalerider rumbled out of town and off to the famous El milino camp site in Pentigorria 30mins out of Pampalona. Rumbled through some wicked old towns and countryside, Whalerider barley making it over the arse end of the Piranease. El milino was heaving, 3000 people in party mode, skimpy Bikinis floating around everywhere and too our welcome surprise more Kiwis than ozies, the party was on. Quick unpack before beers barby and some poolside action.
Whalerider support crew was extended with the addition of Phil, and Mountain who became very attached to the beer bong as well as the gas bottle.
The running of the Bulls the following morning was one hell of a rush all the boys makn it through unscathed, afew other runners were not so lucky tho, But with that box ticked it was time to tick of the many boxes of San Migeal taking up most of the room in the back seat, it might not have been ice cold but Old San went down in a hurry.
King AKA the Ron took to the river with the lylo and with 200 cheering onlookers lacing the banks, Ron ran the El milino Rapids in style as only the Ron could do with the Spanish evening sun glistening of the mullet and Mo. Aside from Ron on linens efforts Peppers 4day marathon was something that will go down in history amongst Van tour legends.
El milno and the running of the Bulls 06; Poolside, free pouring, 30degrees, Ron, Gas bottles solid crew,
. ya mudda!
Just relaxed and waited for the call from the garage about the muffler. Met Ricardos mate who hooked us up with some more ice and with absolutely no comprenday spent the afternoon with the crew playing hackey and chilling out. Call arrived from garage with bad news, could buy a new van for the price and was going to take 10 days to get from Barcilona.
Day 15: 3/7
Woke this morning with a bit of a group mission get the mountains of washing done as its getting a bit smelly around here and we have already scene Cam rotate the 2 shirts he has more time than times than we would like to remember. Also get the muffler fixed on the Whalerider as it starting cough and spew gas like a Chilman after a night on the piss. Camo and Chris went down to the local garage with the campsite owner who is turned out to be a bit on of character. The rest headed to St Sebastian and then to Lasanti to find a Landry. With the help on a nice Spanish girl Hizy found who took us to one but it was closed on a Monday sweet., the girl then offered to wash Hizys underwear at her place . We ended up doing all the washing by hand in the basins at the campsite. What a mission!!!. Got on the piss with the owner who is a complete Legend, he hooked us up with ice wich is gold in these parts. Dirty dirty sangria.