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Loaded up for Morocco

Peeeng! A deafening bang

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    Day: 002



    Total kilometers:
    311 km

    Temperature day max:

    Night temperature:

Although we wanted to be on the road by late morning, we are still packing in the afternoon. Like weasels, we run from the house to Terra Love and fill it with cameras, cables, food, drinks, clothes and odds and ends. Just the day before yesterday, Stefan bought us some new clothes to wear so that we could take some great photos for the company he works for, preferably in a cool location. Years ago, Stefan was once a distributor for a large international outdoor outfitter. At that time, this company was one of our most important cooperation partners. After they gave him and then us notice, we lost sight of each other. Just a week ago, he stopped by to say hello without obligation. “How’s the business? Are you all right?” I asked him. “Excellent,” he replied and we got talking about the outdoor clothing company for which he had built up the business in Germany. “Sounds fantastic. Would that be a cooperation partner for us? We’re currently looking for a new supplier in this area,” I said. Even though it seemed impossible to enter into a new business relationship before our trip, we are now adding high-quality sweaters, T-shirts, jackets and vests to Terra’s closet. Just one reason why our departure has been postponed again. “Did you put the warning sticker on?” Tanja asks me as I hurry past her in a goose step.

“Warning stickers?” I ask. “Yes, warning stickers,” she replies. Then I remember that in France you now have to put warning symbols on larger vehicles to make pedestrians and cyclists aware that motorhome, van and truck drivers often don’t see who or what is standing, walking or driving there when turning right. “I’ll put it on when we get to France,” I reply, leaving the house. In the cab I install the new mount for our GoPro camera and the sat nav, then I take the hose out of one of the service hatches to fill the Terra with fresh water. Why am I doing this just before I leave? Quite simply because I couldn’t do it before. “Crap,” I curse quietly, because I had already turned off the garden tap because of the coming winter.

Passing Tanja again, who is in the process of organizing cupboards in the kitchen, I hurry down to the cellar. “Slower is faster!” she calls after me. I turn on the water supply for the garden again, sprint upstairs, out into the garden, plug in the hose and turn on the tap. I quickly insert the hose into the Terra’s water nozzle. Satisfied, I hear the gurgling sound as the hose suddenly slips out of the nozzle and I’m hit by a fierce jet of cold water.

“What a load of shit!” I curse loudly. I put the hose back into the water nozzle so that it can no longer slip out. Then I check the spare parts for our e-bikes again and check the case with the countless instruction manuals that are supposed to explain the technology of our expedition vehicle to me in an emergency. “It’s all there,” I think. Walk into the living room, where there is a small box filled with USB-C, USB-Micro, USB-Mini, USB type A, type B, Apple Lightning to USB cable, microphone cable and a few other cable types that I can’t think of right now. It’s amazing that you can put so much weight together with just a computer and a camera cable. “No wonder our planet is on the verge of collapse if every manufacturer launches its own cable for its devices,” I think aloud.

Tanja and I rush back and forth for a few more hours until we finally think we have everything under control, the house is taken care of, the car is loaded, we say goodbye to my mother and we are ready to leave. When I put the ignition key in the lock, the Terra’s engine starts with a rich whump, we fasten the seat belts and take a last look at our home, we have months of massive work behind us, so much work that for the first time in our travel life we thought we might not make it. “Phew,” I moan quietly. “That was a tough year,” Tanja replies with a tired smile. “Absolutely,” I agree with her. “Do we have everything?” she asks. “I think so and if not, it doesn’t matter now. The main thing is that we set off,” I reply, stepping on the gas pedal, whereupon our 7-ton truck slowly starts to move. Peeeng! A deafening bang. Just one street away, about five hundred meters behind our house, the explosion-like blast makes our blood run cold. “That’s it then,” I say quietly. “What, that’s it then?” I hear Tanja ask. “The engine has exploded,” I reply powerlessly. “The engine can’t just explode,” Tanja replies. “Apparently you do,” I whisper and feel a hot tear roll down my cheek. “Why are you crying?” “Because it will be weeks before the damage is repaired and we just can’t get away. It’s exasperating.”

“Ohho, aaahhh.” “Denis, what’s wrong?” Tanja suddenly calls out loudly. I open my eyes and see a light gray wall directly above me. It takes me a while to realize that it’s the ceiling of our alcove. “Phew, thanks for waking me up. I had a terrible dream.” Still suffering from the shock of our journey being brought to a premature end by the explosion of the engine, I look out of the window at the building not far from us.

“Are you fit for the video shoot?” asks Tanja. “I need a few more minutes, then I’ll be fine,” I reply, feeling the weight of the last few weeks and months slowly falling from my shoulders.

Nicol Hirschfeld, Tanja & Denis Katzer and Achim Krum in front of the KCT company building.

A little later, Nicole and Achim from the company welcome us. KCT. We discuss the upcoming video shoot over coffee and cookies. Once everything is clear, we set off on a guided tour of the production facility.

We are surprised at the amount of technology and engineering that goes into a motorhome window and that every single window is assembled by hand.

In the morning we decide to stay another day to check the film material, not that there is anything wrong with the sound or anything else.

That would be bad. So it’s better to check the footage and, in the worst case, reshoot some scenes.

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