Having passed through Balasll Common, I did spot that the dual carriage way in the opposite direction was under water but our side was fine. Except for the final few feet before the Stonebridge roundabout. Before me was another bit puddle. On one side an AA van was recovering a car facing in the other direction.
The car in front of me slowly made his way through and from this I judged the water just about shallow enough to cross. To be honest, I didn't see what my other options were, you can't turn around and the only side road lead who knew where?
Revs kept up and speed down, we made it through fine. Approaching the NEC though, I noticed that the engine note was deeper than normal. Parking up, I looked under the back of the car and realised wading through the flood had pulled the back box off the end of my exhaust. All the bits were there but not connected.
Suffice to say, I was not happy. Being stuck with a stand 20 miles from home did not bode well for the day. However, it is the sort of thing I hand the RAC money every month to sort out. Back in the hall, a quick call put the fix in motion. I made it clear that I wasn't any sort of priority, after all, we were in a car park and not planning to move until 5pm anyway.
Breakfast today was double sausage, I didn't fancy risking eggy shirt again considering my luck earlier. Very nice though.
A little more wandering before opening time allowed me to see a fascinating Dutch moving diorama which employed perspective modelling. The owner explained, with the aid of diagrams, how he managed this. Aside from the clever use of dept, the modelling was superb. I was also very tempted by a working 4mm scale cyclist kit but mindful of an immanent bill for car repair, my wallet stayed tucked away.
Show opening saw a slow start for us. I actually built much of the wagon chassis before settling down to chatting. Chatting that was interrupted by calls from the RAC alerting me to the progress of my repairman. I'm sorry if you caught me during one of these - I couldn't do much about it.
Anyway, about 11, a man in van was on the way. He called from the car park (I'd alerted the parking guys that he was on the way) and by the time I got to him, the back of the car was up in the air with a new clamp being fitted to re-join the exhaust parts. Despite my crusty middle pipe, he patched it up and I was back in the hall in time to head to lunch at 12.15. Excellent service from the RAC there.
Lunch seemed better organised and I scoffed a jacket spud. We were all mystified buy the mention of a one potato dessert on the menu, especially as the puddings were yoghurt's and muffins. The former tasted of strawberry so I can only guess at the muffin ingredients...
The afternoon was as Saturday morning. Lots of chat and a few more signings. Today's topic was the Class 13 diesel conversion
I kept trying to explain how simple a job this is, especially with the aid of a copy of Parker's Guide (still available for sale) and the bits from RT Models, who were at the show.
There was even a bit more wandering. I kept my hands in my pockets as there wasn't anything I really wanted. Well, apart from one stand which had some Triang building kits I'd never seen. And 2 Giraffe cars and a Slaters Hudswell Clarke kit in O gauge. And a boxed Hornby steam rocket coach.
OK, I could have spent loads. As it was my total purchases apart from food were a set of smokebox clock hands from RT Models for 30p.
So, it appears the way to save money at Warley is to be a demonstrator. You don't get out much and the entrance is free. Mind you, it's hard work. We were both tired when we got home, that's what sitting around and gassbagging all day does for you.
Thanks to everyone who came up for a chat, especially those who took the time to say nice things about this blog, my magazine wittering and MREmag. To me this is what shows are all about, a chance to put names to e-mail addresses or Tweets. I hope you all had as good a time as I did (apart from the exhaust thing) and look forward to seeing you in the future.
My photos on Flickr.