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Celebrate! The 8mm Socket Is Found

Blog Date - 22 October 2018

It's been a long long long weekend.

I went to Cornwall on Thursday, camped 2 nights there then returned on Saturday. Saturday evening and Sunday morning was spent working on Sharon's Kwakker. Sunday afternoon was a little easier with a shakedown ride, just a short hop to St Helens to ensure all was well with said Kwakker. I'll explain the Cornwall trip and the job on the Kwakker soon.

The sun is rising into a blue sky with light clouds over a campsite in Cornwall
October sun at a campsite in Cornwall.
Under the petrol tank of Sharon's Z250SL we see the rocker cover and the airbox
Avert your eyes! Sharon's bike has been undressed.

Then I returned home and unpacked. It was all going well until I started to return my tools to the toolbox. 

Way back when we were younger and Sharon still had money and still liked me she purchased a Halfords toolkit for me. It was and still remains one of of my best gifts, I have cherished it and kept it all in the box and in good order. It is a delight to use and a source of pride and pleasure.

The halfords toolkit has a selection of sockets, spanners and various other shiny chrome plated tools
Beautiful, simply beautiful.

I could not take all the tools with me to Cornwall but as I knew I'd be working on Sharon's bike upon my return I took a selection of the sockets and spanners with me. I carefully wrapped them up and tucked them deep into my bags so as not to loose them. They all made it back with me from Cornwall and were all present and correct when working on the 250.

When I returned home and was putting stuff away I pulled out my tools and carefully unrolled the t-shirt they were wrapped in. I did not see the 8mm 1/4 inch drive socket. 

A line of sockets in the toolbox and a gap where the 8mm socket ought to be
One of the most terrifying sights, worse than any horror movie or snuff video. 

Oh god. Oh no. Disaster!!! I did consider calling 999 to raise a search and rescue party. We don't have the National Guard here in Blighty but I have a friend in America, maybe they could send a squadron to widen the search. I tearfully contacted Sharon but alas the 8mm was not in the shed or her house. 

I dared not consider the thought that it was gone for good. It would mean a trip to Halfords and my having to....I can't say it... deep breath... be brave Ren... spend... some... MONEY!! 

It has been a restless night. What little sleep I had was filled with rancid dreams of my 8mm being kidnapped and held to ransom, of it lying lost and rusting under a flag around the back of Sharon's shed and of pound notes (yes, notes) flying away from my wallet into the hands of some greasy millionaire.

Then this morning I picked up the old t-shirt the tools were wrapped in to put it back into the shed. I felt a tap on my toe, a hard, firm yet small tap on my third pinkie. What? Is it? Could it be? 

It IS!!! My 8mm socket is found! It is here! Oh sweet mercy, oh rejoice and praise the almighty god of tools! I feel the tension in my shoulders release, I feel my breath calming and smoothing out. I stroke it and caress it. I shall return it to it's rightful place between 7mm and 9mm and declare this to be a national holiday. 

A Halfords Professional 1.4 inch drive socket
Oh sweet mercy, I thought I'd lost you forever!
All the sockets are now back in order in the moulding of the toolbox
Order is restored and the world is now a better place.

Remember the 22nd of October, the day 8mm was lost and then found. 

If you'd like to share a tool story then contact ren@bikesandtravels.com

Reader's Comments

Ian Soady said :-
At least after hours of searching you didn't go out and buy another one. I have two infra-red thermometers after misplacing the first one and needing one urgently - of course as soon as I'd bought the replacement the original turned up.

They're actually quite useful bits of kit - eg when you heat up an alloy casting to fit bearings - although probably not particularly accurate. Available from ebay etc for under a tenner.

I also have duplicates of many sockets (again quite useful) as mine didn't come in a posh case but have been bought as and when - often from car boot sales and the like.
23/10/2018 9:08:29 AM UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Oooooh I have a "posh case"! Get me.

I do have a few drawers in the shed filled with random spanners, sockets and the like collected and acquired over the years. They are all useful but none of them have the same "quality" feel of the Halfords kit.

I have, some time back now, lost the 19mm impact socket from the kit. Eventually after stripping the house I gave in and spent about £7 to replace it. Sure enough a day or so later the damn thing appeared behind a box I was due to throw out. Grrrrrr!!
23/10/2018 11:43:29 AM UTC
Latchy said :-
That has saved you a good quid or so
24/10/2018 5:45:32 PM UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
It surely has Latchy! I might go mad and treat myself to a penny chew.
25/10/2018 7:34:16 AM UTC
Tony-AKA"the good looking GS800 rider from the Picos trip" said :-
Ren mate I actually fully understand the pain you must have been through, you poor bugger, thank god for the happy ending ... I'm sure the cold sweats and nightmares will pass.
25/10/2018 7:47:26 PM UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Good looking Tony? Surely you mean your pal Ted was the good looking one?

Yes mate, I'm in counselling which is helping and the meds from the Doc are taking the edge off the worst of it. I am considering taking Halfords to court for my stress and trauma, they really ought to ensure their products are "self finding".
26/10/2018 7:50:07 AM UTC
Borsuk said :-
Ren, you say that "I feel the tension in my shoulders release, I feel my breath calming and smoothing out. I stroke it and caress it."

The trouble is I can actually imagine you doing exactly that. I'm surprised you didn't sacrifice the neighbours first born to the God of Tools in thanks.
27/10/2018 8:43:16 PM UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
My neighbour's first born doesn't live at home any more, I think I'd struggle to find him. I did burn some incense and chant some random mumblings though.

Try stroking and caressing a socket. It's very therapeutic.
29/10/2018 10:18:28 AM UTC

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