Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Lada Legend: Who Steals a Zhiguli 011? - Part 5

When compared to the other wrecks in the yard, the ol' Colonel wasn't in particularly bad shape. But what was necessary to get it back on the road?
  1. Get a state-approved mechanic to look at the car and write a damage report (and how much it would cost to fix said damage)
  2. Give the damage report to the chief investigator
  3. Get permission to take the car from the impound lot
  4. Make the car driveable to get it out of the lot
  5. Pay the lot authority for parking fees
  6. Pay the tow truck that brought the car to the lot (ironically, we never actually wanted the car towed to the lot)
  7. Get the damage fixed
  8. Take the car to our mechanic to get things looked at
  9. Drive the car off into the sunshine

We managed to get our saviour, Ilham, to take care of most of the above for us. He told us crazy stories about actually getting the car off the lot. The car wouldn't start, but then they finally got it started, before it died halfway to the mechanic. I think there was some rain mixed in as well.

One of the repairs that needed doing was a new front right panel. For this, we made our way to a welder's yard to watch a guy pound the Colonel with a sledge hammer. Multiple times we heard the line, "I can't weld the panel on because there is nothing to weld it to." Such is the state of our car.

Eventually we got the car to the final stage of the process. Our mechanic took care of the final repairs and let us know that we could pick up the car. It was an exciting day. We had no idea what the Colonel was going to look like.

As we approached, one thing immediately caught our eyes: parts of the car that had the paint stripped off were painted a rather bright yellow. This meant big blotches on the hood and the side of the car. Strangely, the black panel remained black. Classy.

Driving the car back into the city was as redeeming as a drive can be. The Colonel cruised through the streets reborn and victorious. In celebration, I attempted to create a meat car while we treated Ilham to a homemade dinner.

Yet another chapter in the Lada Legend comes to a close. Up next, the day the Colonel went down the aisle.

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