Francis Drake, Privateer

A privateer was a private warship authorized by his country to attack foreign shipping

Very big hole very flat tyre.—————30 May 09

Back in the seventies when I was a college student I owned a little mini car. That mini was like an extension of my persona.

I remember my Dad saying to me, “you don’t have an accelerator pedal on that car do you?”.   “What do you mean?” I asked him a little perplexed.  “You’ve just got an On-Off switch haven’t you,” he replied with a grin. Dad had a great humour.

I laughed knowing what he was getting at. Get in, slam the door, foot flat to the floor. Being a mini it stuck to the road like glue, and went where you aimed the wheel.  There is no point in being slow when you are young!

I gave my life to the Lord while I was at college, (although I had known the Lord since a child) and everything  became crazy for a while.

My Mini needed new tyres and being a tight fisted Northerner I wasn’t going to pay stupid prices for the tyres when I knew that the cheapest place for tyres on planet Earth was back in my home town several  hundred miles from college. I owed my parents a weekend back home.

However I was literally cutting it a bit fine as far as the tyre tread was concerned. I was not too worried though as I was confident that they would last until then.

The weekend came and I thrashed across the moors and mountains to the other side of the country, arriving at my parents late on the Friday night. All was well and it was good to be home.  My plan was to go the fifteen miles into the nearby town  on the Saturday morning, straight to the tyre shop and get a complete set for all four wheels. However it didn’t work out quite like that.

First thing Saturday morning we got a phone call from a friend back at college saying that some crisis had happened to a close friend whose life was now in danger, and they were specifically asking that I urgently return.

I apologised to my parents for the rapid cancellation of our family weekend, and set off in the return direction with my foot flat on the floor. The journey was uneventful apart from being stopped for speeding by the police. He joked that it must be a life or death issue that I was in such a hurry, and was taken aback when I said yes. When I explained, he told me to clear off and be more careful not to let him catch me speeding through his patch again.

Anyway the event turned out to be all a storm in a teacup. There was no crisis, just some idiot being over dramatic. I was annoyed because it had spoiled a weekend, cost me a lot of money in fuel, and meant that I was even more at risk on my even more perilously worn tyres.

However the next weekend came, and again I arrived at the family home on Friday night after thrashing the car over from the other side of the country. Saturday first thing I headed straight for town, top priority being new tyres.

My destination was part of a big car sales and spares and repair complex. The actual tyre depot was at the far corner of the big car park, accessed by a track around the perimeter. As I entered the site, I saw that another car was slowly negotiating the route in the direction of the tyreshop. Now being young impatient and cocky, I decided to take a short cut at speed through the car park. This meant that I had to zigzag through all the parked cars, slotting through all the empty spaces. The carpark was a gravel surface, and I was going fast, racing against the other car heading the same way from the opposite corner. He of course was not racing, he was just another peaceful driver going about his business.

I did get there first and raced into the tyre bay, braking sharply to a halt. This is where it all got a bit strange.

I slammed the brakes on, stopping with a screech. I instantly switched the engine off, and made as to leap out of the car. However, before I could move, I felt a very distict and sudden drop at the front drivers corner of the car. I jumped out and looked at the wheel. The tyre was totally flat. However that was the easy part, the problem was the hole in the side wall of the tyre which was so big that I could put my hand through it!

At that moment, I started to realise the presence of angels, and I goosebumped all over. I knew the presence of God was there. The tyre fitter was standing beside me a little perplexed. “You didn’t drive here like that did you, that’s crazy”. Well I hadn’t just driven, I had raced, I had zigzagged, on gravel, through the narrow gaps between the parked cars!

THAT TYRE, ALTHOUGH IT HAD A HOLE THE SIZE OF MY HAND IN IT, WAS ABSOLUTELY NOT FLAT WHILST I WAS DRIVING. I WOULD HAVE KNOWN BY THE HANDLING THAT SOMETHING WAS WRONG. BESIDES I FELT IT SUDDENLY DROP WHEN I SWITCHED THE ENGINE OFF. I HAVE NO IDEA HOW LONG THE HOLE HAD BEEN THERE.

I know without a doubt that the angels of God were riding shotgun on my journeying that day!

I got my new tyres and drove home,  a little more sedately and thoughfully on that journey.

May 30, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | 5 Comments