It is a hundred days before we board the ferry at Dover and are off on our travels. Now I didn’t work that out myself but I heard on the TV that it is a hundred days before the first kick off for the world cup on the 11th June which is when I have booked my ticket on the ferry to France. It is a one way ticket and only cost me £22 on Sea France which is a darn good deal. I have used this company for years and as a regular customer I am at the fore front to be advised of any special deals that may be on offer. Before that though there are may jobs to be done on the Land Rover and visas and the carnet to be attained. This last week I got in touch with the RAC about a carnet which was very straight forward as we down loaded the form from their web site and sent it off. A few days later we received a quotation for £245. £190 for a 25 page carnet and £55 for a bank guarantee administration fee. I valued the van at £2000 (no matter that I have recently spent over £3000 on repairs)which means I need a bank guarantee of £10000 as the Asian countries impose a a customs fee of five times the value of the van. The value of the van is the same as five years ago when I went to South America. However the banks are not as helpful as five years ago as I found out when I went to see them today. Then I paid £75 for the guarantee and that was all. Today they want me to deposit the full £10000 of the carnet value and I never got round to asking what the fee would be. It is a sign of the times. No matter that you have been a customer for over thirty years and never missed a payment in all that time and have an excellent credit rating which now counts for nowt. It’s a sad fact of life that you cannot do without banks but they have got you by the B....s. Next week I am off to Footloose 4X4 to have some more work done to my land rover. As we are travelling on our own I want to make sure the vehicle is in first class condition because in Australia I want to go on many of the off road tracks.