Posted by: ramblinmanjimj | November 15, 2008

A loud pop in the middle of Nowhere, Mexico!

Picture

From my book…’09/08- (Day 251) At Santo Domingo Tehuantepec. 6 AM temperature was 77 degrees. On the road at 8 AM. Almost immediately, we started climbing again into the beautiful Sierra Madre Mountains. Everything was fine until about four hours and 115 miles. Then, while climbing a rather steep inline, I HEARD A LOUD POP! Immediately it felt like one cylinder was missing. A hundred unwelcome thoughts raced through my head! Then my attention centered on my rapidly rising water coolant temperature gauge. I pulled off the road as best as I could and immediately shut off the engine. Looking under the motorhome front end, I could see oil everywhere. I knew this was not going to be a good happening! Since I was not in a particularly safe spot, Bud with his noisy, smelly diesel came to my rescue for the second time in two days and for the third time during this trip. We hitched up a tow rope and he towed my motorhome and Bronco about one-half mile further up the hill, where we both were safely off the roadway. Here’s what I found out, after inspection of the problem. The tip of one of the blades of the engine cooling fan broke off, exited through the bottom of the engine fan shroud, and then cut through a wire mesh hose which feeds the oil to the radiator to cool the engine oil. End result; I repaired the broken oil line and then tried to start the engine. It turned over a couple of revolutions and then stopped. Bad news! That meant that I had internal engine damage. Talk about bad luck! Just one inch more, the broken fan blade would have missed the oil line, and I wouldn’t have a major problem! It would make a great song title, “What a difference an inch makes!” This is the first major engine problem I am facing in 48 years of driving. I think it’s called “The Law of Averages.” So, finding ourselves in this situation, here’s what we decided to do. Bud and I will spend the night on the side of the road. Bob will go on to the next sizable town/village, and send a tow truck to tow me to a mechanic tomorrow morning. It appears that I will soon have two more cultural experiences! One with a Mexican tow truck driver and one with a Mexican mechanic. No matter what misfortunes befall me, I always look for a positive aspect. In this case, I’m glad it happened here in Mexico because whatever it’s going to cost me, it will only be about one-quarter the cost of what it would have been if it had happened in the United States. In addition, the Mexicans are excellent mechanics. Had this happened in Central America, it would have been much more of a problem. There is a good chance that I would have had to abandon the motorhome! Not having anything better to do, Bud and I had happy hour in his rig. So, in the meanwhile, here we sit alongside a twisting, turning mountain road in the middle of nowhere, at a about a 20 degree angle, waiting to see what tomorrow brings. Like my Bronco license plate says: “1DAAT, One Day At A Time!”

All material Copyright – Jim Jaillet 2008
For more information about my three books, click this link:
http://www.panamaorbust.com

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Categories

%d bloggers like this: