This month at The Channon Craft Market we stepped back in time a bit, to a smaller set up, due to the Draw-bar on the Chai Trailer, being cracked round the welded on plates, we had done in an emergency out in Moree, early one morning, on our way out to the Yaama Festival at Bourke, back in 2007.
Luckily Geradus, Liffy and I were traveling behind Michael, and Geradus spotted the trailer kicking up sparks and dust, as it dragged along the road, about 200 yards ahead of us.
We got Liffy to speed up, and pass him, on a slightly dangerous bend, and we flew past so fast we barely could relay the problem. Her van even became slightly bogged on the edge of the road, when we all managed to stop and park.
They didn't believe us at first, as the trailer looked perfectly fine, until Geradus pulled down at the back end and showed them how it touched the road. The two metal rectangular hollow drawbars, were cracked thru on 3 sides, only just staying attached along the bottom edge ! We were soooo lucky they hadn't snapped right thru, particularly while we were speeding up immediately behind them, as we were able to strap it up with Tie Down ratchet straps and turn back into Moree, finding a young man, just opening his workshop at 8.30am. He began straight away, and we were back on the road in no time.
You may say, he didn't do a very good job if they have now cracked again, but this trailer is always packed to the max, often possibly overloaded. It has been the Bane of Michael's life for years. He 'Dreams' of his Custom Built Chai Trailer. It has been fully designed, even drawn up by Finn on a computer program, where you can see it in 3D and thru the walls. It just needs BIG Dollars to Build it.
Anyway, luckily Michael spotted the cracks on the Thursday before market, as he was taking the gas bottles off for re-filling. He was able to organise himself, taking out just the minimum needed, and what he could pack into and on to the twincab ute, borrowing the red hexagon gazebo from the market along with two trestle tables.
Everyone really enjoyed the new set up and it afforded me a prime vantage to document the Chai being made from behind the half-wall constructed out of the old tent walls over a rope, for safety, health and hygiene.
In goes the grated ginger
In goes the cold water
Front counter set up was a little different, as due to space restrictions in the truck, we had disposable cups, instead of 3 boxes or ceramic mugs and Hot Water gas burners. So wejust had Chai and Cakes, no Coffee or Tea. Many jokes this was because Benny wasn't there to wash up and stuff the environment anyway lol.
Ingrid from Wacky Wax Candles, watched the whole set up this time, in their new location, and told me how amazed she was at the amount of work we do. She thought their set up was big, until she watched, everything that we do.
She was very impressed with the wonderful way Finn and Michael worked together, joking and laughing, more like friends than father and son.
Nearly ready for the milk ?
We decorated the half wall with Benny's flags, as they were looking decidedly stained, after being used down at The Embassy in Canberra this year, ( camped on by the Aunties from Central Australia)
The open view, gave a wonderful spaciousness being able to see thru, without the trailer
We did think that we might get away earlier than normal, which can be anywhere between 8.30 and 10.30 pm, as it was a smaller set up, and maybe Michael would just take everything home to wash later, like other food stalls can. But 'tho we did leave a 8pm, it was just as much a Jigsaw puzzle for Michael to pack, plus it was a totally new jigsaw, he had to remember how he'd fitted it all in.
So we didn't manage to beat Greg from Coffee Oasis, as we joked about in the morning.