Just a quick one to say all is well and better than.
Last week I was on the verge of quitting my super-duper job and going back to a mass stress, treated like shit one that provided regular hours. I’d had three shifts the week before, one shift that week. I was giving it until the end of this week then applying. Then I had five days on the trot working. This week, the last three days, have been long hours. I’m on for a £600- £700 week this week. I was looking at £800 plus but they stood me down yesterday. Apparently the Southern depot start doing the spud runs to Cornwall from now so they are maxed-out doing that, meaning loads of work for everyone else. And then it’s the holiday season, so the driver I was talking to reckons there will be work aplenty for the next three months. That will do nicely.
I love this job but I needed more work. And here it is. Yay!
Then there’s the running. Following my training plan I’m now half way through week 5, (of 16 to marathon) I did a 15 mile run for my end of week ‘big’ run, and my injuries are no worse. My shins still hurt a bit. Enough to make me nervous they are about to go again, but so far they are holding out. 19 runs in 4½ weeks and still not broken. Fingers crossed.
Wendy is doing the last day of her phased return to work tomorrow, after that she’s back to her regular hours next week. This is good. She has been freaking out as they’ve upgraded the system so instead of hand writing everything then inputting it into the PC later they just do it straight into the computer as they client tells them. She’s not best clever with computers. ‘Crap’ springs to mind, unbidden. So it’s been freaking her, but I think she’s sussed it now. And they are having her refresh her specialist skills in benefits as well as debt, she’s going to be doing two days a week Specialist Debt Advisor, two as a Specialist Benefits Advisor.
Benefits are not her favourite, but in these uncertain times hers is the most most secure job there now. Even if they lay off all the paid staff and go back to being a volunteer only branch (because they lose all the government funding, could well happen) she is then the most qualified for a job in other sectors, such as housing trusts.
But all this is a sideline, a mere added bonus to the win-fest that is the bike! (Wendy still doesn’t thinks so.)
It’s beyond lovely. I’ve already tensioned the chain, changed the plugs, cleaned the air filter, downloaded a digital workshop manual and looked up other stuff. Today I was off so I took some parts I’d ordered (two tiny washers and a new air filter) and did an internet fix. Apparently Kawasaki designed the bike with a 3½-5 thousand rev flat spot (so that it would pass the emissions test). I’d been riding it and was content riding up to the flat spot then changing up a gear. It wasn’t awesome performance but it was nice. They guy doing the online review said it handled like his Bonnie after 5 thousand revs but I wasn’t thrashing it. Then I revved through the flat spot accelerating to merge onto the motorway. Holy crap! She upped and flew, I was having to haul in the speed in seconds.
Anyway, apparently the fix for the flat spot is to strip the carbs, remove the needle thing, put these tiny little washers on the needle, reassemble and job’s a good ‘un. I read the online instructions and it looked like I was going to be fiddling about all day with it. I did it this morning. It took me less than an hour. And I replaced the air filter with a new genuine Kawasaki one while I was at it.
I took it for a test ride afterwards. The ‘fix’ was so suspiciously simple I thought I must have done something wrong. But no, pulls like a train from any revs now. I picked up a plod so was tootling along at dead on 30mph, I got to a 60mph section, flick of the wrist and instantly doing 60! Awesome.
It’s not a Japanese 4 cylinder race bike, the front wheel is not in the air every time you open her up, but it’s more than enough to make you smile. And it’s delivered in the classic twin cylinder fashion; a brutal thump and roar of power.
Also my log book arrived today.
6 previous owners. Averaging 19 months per owner, 2,833 miles each. And none of them had bought and fitted the 2 washers that fix the flat spot. I’ve ridden 533 miles in 16 days, serviced it and got it riding properly.
Next jobs are to check the ignition timing, the valve clearances and the carb balance. Then just to upgrade the springs in the front suspension and get new rear shock absorbers. That’s as tight as it’s going to get as a ‘standard’ bike.
After that it’s cafe racer!
This is all in the future. First and foremost I have to pay for the bike itself.
If work is in a 3 months frenzy that should more or less cover it. Once we are out of debt again it won’t matter if I get a few short weeks. The three day week with minimum hours per shift was still £330 take home.
If we don’t have to pay anything off that’s more than enough to get by on.
Anyway, I thought I’d do a blog where everything is groovy. Nothing to whine and bitch about. It feels good. And novel.
I’ve still not got around to doing the Twitter update, I’ll do it soon. To be honest with the longer shifts, on nights, I’m not getting on there that much.