We left the UK in the icy jaws of “The Beast From The East”, travelling north east through France, Germany, The Netherlands, Germany (again) and on to Poland. We spotted patches of melting snow by the roadside but the roads were dry and clear and we felt confident that the worst of the weather was behind us.
We made three overnight stops in Germany – at Bad Bentheim, Hatten-Kirchhatten and Magdeburg and arrived in Poland on the fourth day. En route we called in to Groningen in the north of the Netherlands to say hello to John Stalman, a colleague from our days in the boat business who ran Van den Bosch Yachting for a number of years. John and his wife, Sabina, owned and ran a beautiful marina on the Paterswoldsmeer. It had been almost ten years since we had seen John but he hadn’t changed one bit.
We were travelling to Poland to see the progress on our truck that was being converted into an expedition vehicle that would replace our current motor home. The project had begun over a year ago when we purchased a 2003 ex Dorset Fire Brigade fire tender from a dealer in Preston, Lancashire and had the vehicle shipped by low loader to Poland where they began the conversion by stripping back the chassis, painting and servicing the vehicle. They fitted larger fuel tanks, an air pressure system for the tyres and they removed the rear twin wheels and replaced with single larger ones.
After settling into our campsite at Malta Lake in Poznan, we went to collect the truck from the local Mercedes Benz dealership where they had been carrying out some modifications to the vehicle. We were very excited as it was the first time we had seen the truck since the day we purchased it. Tony was able to get behind the wheel and, after a practice circuit of the dealership, we drove the truck on a forty minute journey to the company who would carry out the exhaust modifications.
We then visited Camperspol, the company that was building the habitation box that would sit on a specially constructed galvanised frame attached to the chassis. The habitation box was being constructed using a grp foam sandwich. There would be a lot of work on this box over the next few months, fitting it out with all the paraphernalia needed to keep the Morgans warm and comfortable on their travels.