Day 258: Its a kind of magic

1 April 2011

High point: Making the ship to Cueta, the Spanish border town in Morocco, with two minutes to spare thanks to ‘pedal to the metal Morrow’ and a bit of good old fashioned FTFE luck

Low point: Driving around Cueta for about 40 minutes trying to find a place to stay on a road we could fit Martha down

No point: Ship cam, 35 minutes watching the view from the front of the ship was riveting

Location: Coveta Fuma (Spain) to Cueta (Morocco)

Waking up somewhere familiar was very surreal indeed.  Casa Holder brought back nice memories of summer weekends with friends, I never thought we’d be visiting again in a fire engine!


After leaving the wonderful hospitality of daddy Holder we decided to knock out some big miles and try to make the ferry crossing to Morocco.  The drive along the Andalucían coast towards Malaga was pretty special with the crystal clear blue sea never far out of sight or around the next corner.

Today was my 5 month anniversary of being on the fire engine.  It felt pretty strange, not so much because I’ve been on the road for 5 months, more the fact we’re so close to home… only 9 days until we’re reunited with everyone in Greenwich on 10th April and get back to the real world!  What will life be like without going from A to B in a fire engine every day?  How will I be able to do a normal job again when I’m programmed for FTFE crew jobs?  How will I be able to make decisions without consulting everyone in the cab beforehand?  Will Steve be able to cope without Martha?  But most of all what will life be like without all the magical mystical things that happen every single day when you’re part of Follow That Fire Engine?

Some people might describe it as luck or being in the right place at the right time, maybe it’s Steve’s face or Garth watching over us, but I guarantee you every crew member will have a story about how we’ve been in trouble and at the last minute things have worked out better than we could have hoped.  “You can start with nothing and out of nothing and no way, a way will be made” (Michael Bernard Beckwith).  No matter how much of a pickle we think we’re in, everything always works out in the end.

A small example of this happened last night.  Normally keys to Casa Holder would have been a problem but Charlie’s dad John had flown out to the villa the day before at the last minute.  What are the chances?  The chances are quite high when you have Follow That Fire Engine good fortune on your side and all the amazing people who help us along our way every single day.

Winston Churchill said “You create your own universe as you go along”.  When you’re trying to do something good, good people are attracted to you and good things happen and they happen for a reason.  Sadly so many people have been touched by cancer that it creates a kind of good will in the world.  Another way to explain all the magical things that happen in the world of FTFE, in no particular order:

Finding a Mercedes truck garage in the middle of nowhere in Switzerland when the fuel tank was leaking, meeting a Mongolian eagle hunter in the middle of nowhere and being invited to stay in his Ger, a mechanic driving past the crew in China and helping them out after they had crashed, clearing Oz customs in two days when it should have taken 3 weeks, being escorted safely through a snow storm in Arizona, making the ship across the Atlantic by the skin of our teeth (after clearing a bridge by only an inch) and the port authority letting us in even though we were a day late… the list is endless.

So after a long day we managed to catch the ship to Cueta with two minutes to spare, what can I say, luck, magic, good fortune, the energy of everyone following willing us to succeed, whatever it is I hope I haven’t spoken too soon.


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3 Responses to “Day 258: Its a kind of magic”

  1. FRSCA Sec Nick April 3, 2011 at 10:30 pm

    Loads of “Bomberos” (Spanish Firefighters) train at the Fire Service College, Moreton in Marsh. Should be worth a beer or two!!

  2. For all the FTFE Crew/s …
    … as the Irish say ” no such thing as strangers, only friends you haven’t yet met.”

    May your God go with you.

  3. Putting my letter together today to confirm your stay in Hoover, AL in March. Glad you guys and gals made it home safely!