Sacked by the "downturn", an unemployed architect touring the country in a bus...



I used to live in New York City. I designed homes for the tycoons of Wall Street; Park Avenue, Scarsdale, Greenwich. It was great fun. And, after years of saving up for a down payment, I was just about to buy my own little place in Fleetwood, half an hour north of the city, when the economy fell apart. Architects are like canaries in a coal mine when the economy slows, and true to form, there were massive layoffs in firms all over the country. Devastation of the profession. So, I decided to try to find something else to do for a while. I bought a 23' school bus and I'm on the road to see if I can figure out what that might be.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Bad gas, good gas!

I bought my second tank of gas yesterday.  I had a funny feeling fueling up the first time...
I had pulled into a little off the beaten track gas station that had a dowdy look, but sold deisel fuel.  So I pulled up to the single deilsel pump, looked it over suspiciously, and went inside with my credit card.  Fueling up went reeeeaaaaly slooooww, so I made a previously postponed phone call while the pump slugged along.  In a minute, the cashier came out from inside and told me that if the diesel was pumping slowly, I should stop, wait a few seconds, and restart.  I did, and it went a little faster.

For the following few days I watched my milage as does any newly aquired vehichle owner, and I was dissapointed to find that I was going to get less than 400 miles from 45 gallons of fuel.  Gulp.  Plus, acceleration was terrible; I could get the bus up to 60 or 65 eventually, but it sounded like it was really strugling and was much more comfortable settling in a 45 or 50.  Drat.

Well, yesterday, I filled up again, at a sparkling clean, well trafficked BP station.  Wow!  What a difference.  The engine was quieter and smoother running, and the beast did 65, 70, and even 75 with no problem, settling in at a comfortable 65 to cruise down the highway along with traffic.  Whew!  I was singing and laughing out loud, making up lyrics to and old gospel song in a wild, full throated voice.  "I own the road, and I'm going to Charlotte in my Bus!"  I immediately theorized that the first tank was full of sludgy crap gas.  I'd heard that a diesel engine can run on almost anything (see Vegetable oil thread) and so it did.  But this new tank of fuel is marvelous.  It's a little early to tell the milage, but after 100 miles, the needle has hardly moved off full.  Te-he.

I am delighted with my now new again Tourtoise.  I am dependent on my bus now, the mother ship, and so the desire to love her is strong.  And I do!

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