Day 021 Greece : Isthmia - Pateleimonos

Day 021 Greece

Trip Distance 528 km (328 m) Total Distance 4016 km (2496 m)
Diesel Costs €0.83 - €1.05    
Toll Fees €26.20    
Camping Heraklia N40.01139 E22.59226 €15.00 - Dirty, horrible, revolting but open at midnight


Have you ever woken up feeling that you should just stay in bed and avoid the inevitable happening?  Well, next time my little voice shouts at me, I'm going to listen.  What a horrible 24 hours we have just had. 

On Friday (2 days ago - although it feels like a life time), I realised that I had cocked-up our insurance.  Our UK comprehensive insurance which covered us until our entry into Turkey had been cancelled too early and was due to stop on Monday 4th May.  I tried everything to get them to stop the cancellation process but our Brokers (Parkside, don't ever use them please!) were rude to the point of being stroppy when I asked them to help us.  The answer "nothing we can do".  We tried to call the insurance company direct only to be told mostly the same thing but in a bit of a friendlier tone, sorry once the process has started, it can't be stopped.  Hey ho, not to worry we have the world wide insurance from Campbell Irvine, which activated on 4/5/09 bought for 1 year to cover us from fire and theft but not comprehensive cover.  It would mean not getting in an accident for a couple of days as we made our way to Turkey.  Can you see what's coming next???????  As we made our way up to Thessaloniki, we stopped in at Volos and blow me down, we had an accident!!! 

We accidently ran a stop street (we yeilded but only slowed to 5kph) in a some incredibly busy side roads and a smart car ran into us.  For the next 6 hours we were tied up in the Greek police system - not a great place to be when you don't speak the language.  But they were just doing their jobs and the Greek man who's car it was, all he wanted was to get it repaired - no-one was threatening or treated us badly.  They eventually let us go after we gave them the insurance certificate which we gave them knowing we weren't comprehensively covered and would have to pay the full repair fees for the smart car.  I must say at this point neither Sully nor ourselves have any injuries - the smart car ran into her front left tire and crushed it's bumper.  No airbags deployed on the smart car, no broken lights - it was a slow speed impact, thank god.

So here we were.  It turns out though, that we may still be covered.  Although I had requested our policy to cancelled on 4/5/09, it turns out that our day cycle on the certificate is from 0000 - 2359.  We may well still be covered as the accident happened at 19:20 Greek time (17:20 UK).  We have requested a fax from the insurance company to confirm the time and date of cancellation - we wait at the moment with bated breath for the answer.

If I can just take a minute to thank everyone that helped us:  Brenda for dealing with Insurance companies and brokers (even the rude ones!), Cameron & Dustin for running around trying to find insurance certificates that I had forgotten to bring with and to Deborah our nextdoor neighbour in UK - thanks Debbie for scanning in the certificate and emailing it to us.

So, an expensive trip to Volos and not one we want to repeat.  But here we are.  And the reason we are here.....  Before we left UK, we bought a Howling Moon safari awning for Sully.  The sides weren't available in UK but were in SA so we ordered them in.  They arrived in the UK where we discovered that they were too short.  At first Jurgens in SA seemed to be quite willing to help us out and replace them.  They requested our next stop address (which was Italy) and were going to send them there.  10 days later we're in Italy and still no awning sides.  After several frustrating emails and lack of response from Jurgens, they eventually did respond but only to tell us that the sides hadn't even left SA.  The sides were then set to be sent to Thessaloniki, another 2 weeks away.  In the meantime, we were left with no sides as the arrangement was to leave our (wrong) sides in UK. 

On the scale of balances, we are way out and this has cost us a huge sum of money - more than we ever wanted or imagined.  Where did it all go wrong?  And when you are on your own with family, friends and infrastructure that you know, weeks away, you begin to question it all.  But we have got through it.  We have stuck together - no fighting, no recriminations, just support and understanding for each other and from our friends and family.  We are still on the road, with many more situations to face and climb over.  Are we going to end this adventure as the same people that let the UK?  Not a chance!