A Sad Ending for Alistair

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We crossed Europe, the Middle East, Australia and nothing bad happened to us. The people were friendly. Dangerous animals were kept at bay. Alistair handled remote bad tracks perfectly. The only really bad decision we made was to ship Alistair back to Europe so we could celebrate my mother's birthday together, after 3 years away from our families. When we opened the container, my blood froze. Something was wrong. Tires exploded, squared wheels, lashing straps were loose, Alistair's roof was damaged. A forklift dragged Alistair out of the container...

It was easy to figure out what had happened: our container had been dropped. Alistair got smashed on the floor, then rebounded against the container ceiling. Axles were bent. The chassis was certainly warped... and we feared further damage would be discovered later. We did not know at the time that this would require interacting with the shipping company. We were kept on hold: "No worries, we'll work this out, just bear with us. The lady in charge of your case is away on pregnancy leave." Until the day we called for an update... "No way, you had 365 days to take us to court, it did not happen, stop bugging us."
At that moment, on the parking lot, we did not yet imagine the future hardships. It seemed bad enough having to move all our luggage, to take down accessories and resell them, to strip Alistair down, and basically remove all the equipment and features painstakingly installed three years earlier...
No, we did not know just yet what was to come. We were simply filled with the sorrow of losing not only our house, our vehicle, but also our trusted travelling companion. So long Alistair, and thank you so much for a great job!
It took me four years to find the strength to create this page. The lesson we learned from this experience is that we should be ready to lose our vehicle again in a snap of the fingers. And to welcome impermanence as a good reminder of what is really important in life.