After having my first vendor event on Saturday and purchasing the step van by Wednesday of that same week; I expected the entire process to move that fast. It's been an entire month since the purchase of the step van. I'm excited to say I've been busy, busy, busy. I've had four shows since my very first event on August 1st. In between vendor events I've been making inventory, with the help of my daughter, Ashley, and preparing orders. I've never been more excited to be this busy.. I'm so grateful and humbled by the blessings that have been bestowed upon me. I promise I won't let you down.
I thought this post was going to be a van update but I kinda want to tell you a little about how I got started on this waistbead journey. You know what? First I'll update you on the van. Next week I'll take you back in time to the beginning of Bodied by ND.
So where was I? Oh yes, it's been a month since we brought home The Wandering Waistbead Boutique from Cary, NC. Nothing has been done with the van and it's driving me CRAZY. I have never liked being on other people's time. Right now the fate of my van is in the hands of Ernest and Wayne. I love them dearly but they've been extremely busy working on other cars in their shop and they had some issues with finding parts.
I feel like I still haven't started at the beginning of the story, so lets go back to the tag and title place in Cary, NC. The gentleman that helped process the title was a complete jerk, we'll call him Rude Boy. He wasn't very nice or helpful at all. I gave him my license which has a previous address on it and tried to give him my change of address card. In the state of Maryland when you change your address instead of issuing you a new license the DMV gives you a change of address card that you are supposed to carry with your license until your license expires. At which time you will get an updated license which will reflect your new address. I tried to explain this to Rude Boy while he was entering the information in the system. He told me in NC it doesn't work like that so he'd have to issue the title in the address on my license. I still have not received nor will I ever receive that title in the mail. This is a huge issue because NC temporary tags expire after 10 days. In the state of MD our temporary tags don't expire for 30 days.
In my mind Ernest and Wayne were going to go back to the shop and get right to work on the van to complete all the work before the temporary tags expired. The first obstacle they faced was the inability to find the parts they needed for the van. Little did they know I'd already started researching. I joined several groups on Facebook and members were able to point me in the direction of a website that sells all things for step vans. If you ever find yourself in this predicament please reach out to me I'd be happy to share the information. I sent my uncles the info and they were able to order the parts they needed.
I have to take a minute to laugh at Ernest and Wayne. Words cannot express how much I appreciate their assistance, however, I gave them a WEBSITE and they CALLED the store owner on the phone. That's not how 2020 works. The purpose of a website is so you don't have to call, 😂. There's nothing like an old school black man. Gotta love them!!! Black men aged 60-85 are the funniest group of individuals. They are funny without even trying. My cousins and I take pleasure in laughing at our cool a** uncles. The leave us in stitches with their antics.
Ok, back to the matter at hand. As with most businesses during the pandemic the shipping time took longer than expected. Couple that with the fact that we've been having an unseasonable amount of rain and thunderstorms for the month of August. It's been almost impossible for my uncles to do any work at all on the van. All the work on the van will have to be done outside because it's too big to fit in the garage and can't go on the lift. I decided in the meantime I would try my best to figure out how to get the generator working and have someone run the necessary electrical wiring. That way when I get the van in my possession I can solely focus on renovating the back. YouTube has been my lover. I've fallen asleep watching "how to" videos every night for the last 30 days. I know more about the Onan 6.5 GenSet generator then I care to. I deduced it is in need of a fuel pump and possibly a carburetor. I went to my side piece, Amazon, and ordered the necessary parts.
I thought I had someone who would be able to assist me in repairing the generator and run the electrical wiring. I've been calling and texting all week with no response. I decided I was going to attempt to fix the thing myself. Let me tell you why I felt extra confident in my abilities. Ya'll ready for a short story?
My washing machine had been broken for months. When I moved into this house I brought along the washing machine I purchased in the house I was renting prior to purchasing the home I'm in now. This house already had a washer and dryer so I put the set I had in the basement. My goal was to get another washer and dryer hook up so we could have two places to wash clothes. That never happened. So when the washing machine broke I had my daughter Eryn's boyfriend, Dave, help me bring the one from the basement upstairs. We plugged it in and it was experiencing the same problems as the one we replaced it with. After washing clothes the water didn't drain it just sat in the machine and our clothes would come out sopping wet. I called a technician to come out and fix it and he was unsuccessful. I decided to call on my lover, YouTube. I found a video and was convinced I could fix this myself. I called my son, Asa, to assist me and we got it done. We had to take the entire washing machine apart to fix it. When I say entire I mean ENTIRE. We took off the lid, the door, the drum, all of it. We were able to successfully fix the washing machine and now it runs like new.
With the washing machine victory under my belt I KNOW I can fix this generator.
I can not fix this generator.
I went to my uncle's house today with two goals. To give them the tags, yes I was able to get the title transferred and temporary tags from a local tag and title place without ever receiving the title from NC because of Rude Boy. I know I'm jumping around with my story telling, I hope it's easy to follow along, I think these little details are important. I hope they encourage you to keep pressing on even when things don't run as smoothly as you'd like.
Tuesday morning I stopped into the tag and title place and I brought my folder. I have a folder of all my business documentation. Which has come in handy on a number of occasions. I had that folder with me at the tag and tile place in NC, but Rude Boy cared about none of that. Had he looked at my change of address card he would've seen the address also matched the address on ALL of my documentation. Oops, tangent.
Let's try this again. Tuesday. MD Tag and Title. I walked in and explained to the young lady at the counter that I purchased a step van in NC and I didn't have the transferred title, but I did have the original title with the original owner's signature. She said if I had the purchase agreement she could assist me with the obtaining a MD title and MD 30 day temporary tags. I had it all in my trusted notebook. I was able to walk out of there with new tags for the Wandering Waistbead Boutique. I won't be able to get permanent tags until the van passes inspection. In my mind this temporary tag should light a fire under my uncles because now they have 30 days before these tags expire.
After I got off work I went to Wayne's house with my temporary tags, carburetor, fuel pump and tool box. I pulled up and Ernest was standing outside talking to a buddy of his, Dale, who had also retired from the Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT). Wayne was in the garage under somebody's vehicle. The van was sitting in the grass all by itself. I excitedly gave Ernest the tags and told him I was there to fix the generator. After they stopped laughing at me and saw that I was dead serious the followed me to the step van. Dale mentioned he knew a little bit about the generator because he had the same one in his RV.
What followed was another series of unfortunate events. I tried to start the generator and it wouldn't even start. Shoot. All the videos I'd watched the generator would at least start. Even if it didn't stay running for long. I was counting on my generator to do at least that much. My pride wouldn't allow me to go back to wear the uncles were and admit my defeat. Luckily, Ernest came over to check my progress. I told him I couldn't get it to start even after pressing the manual start switch on the body of the generator. He explained to me he unplugged the battery on the van. Whew. I still had hope in getting this thing done. He explained he didn't want the battery to die while the van was sitting there idle. He plugged the battery back in while I watched full of hope and excitement.
Nope still didn't work. That's when Dale stepped in and they realized the battery had died despite Ernest's efforts to preserve it. Dale hooked a jumper box directly to the generator and it WORKED. It turned on. Dale said it sounded to him like there might be an issue with the starter. Before I could get in there the jumper box also died. They had at least five jumper boxes all of them DEAD!!! I wish I had taken a picture of all the boxes they had. Another hilarious uncle moment. They took the battery out of the van and into the garage to charge it along with all five jumper boxes. As I sat there waiting for everything to charge I decided to move onto something else. I'm not wired to sit still and do absolutely nothing.
I got on the phone with a locksmith and he was able to come out and make a new key for the van. OK!!! That's one thing I can check off the list of things that have to be done before the van will successfully pass inspection. I know it sounds like a small feat but I'm so excited to have my new keys and the ability to lock and unlock the door from the outside. My uncles said they would try to fix the brakes on Saturday provided it doesn't rain. I'll be back next week and every week until I can take the van to get inspected.
I am determined to see this through.