[This is the fourth part of the true story of my ’76 VW Camper’s fire and resulting odyssey]

We awoke in the morning and went to the VW dealer to hang out until the van was done. It was January 3rd, 1990, and fairly warm in Savannah (in the sixties, if I recall correctly). Our main concern was January 4, 1990, the following day. Denise had a very important job interview in Greencastle, PA for a long term substitute teaching position. The interview was at 8:30am. She’d decided to stay with me and the van. I wasn’t at all sure that she had placed her bet on the right horse (or van, as it were).

We were still unsure that the replacement carb kit would work. We were throwing all of our trust into John Heath, the mechanic who was willing to take on our job. He began ripping off the bad fuel lines at 8:00am. The fuel injectors would be next, and then the manifold, and then the rest of the charred pieces. It would all be replaced by our Weber carburetor kit parts.

We waited. For a long time. To relate the tedium that we endured would do the reader a grave disservice. To be brief, we waited all day. Literally.

At 4:45pm, we heard the van start. It ran. We looked around and saw a flash of orange go by the outside window (I did tell you the van was orange, didn’t I?). This was very, very good news.

Five minutes later the van pulled back into the lot and into the service garage. John got out and went back to the van’s engine compartment. I could see him gently tug on the carburetor cable with a finger to test the linkages. He was smiling.

He came inside to the service desk and told us everything was a go. They wrote up our ticket and we settled the bill. We were never so glad to pay for nine hours of repair time in our lives.

It was almost 5:00pm. We loaded up the van with our stuff and took off for Pennsylvania. We got back on I-95 and headed north. I decided to cut across the Carolinas in a bid to get to Interstate 81 and take it to Pennsylvania. If I was lucky and we made great time, we might just barely make it back home in time for Denise to have her interview. Night closed in as we motored up the eastern seaboard.