Until Saturday evening, I had thought the best money I had ever spent for my (wife's) bus was putting new tires on it. I have now experienced value in a purchase I recently made that has set the benchmark for all future purchases, VW or otherwise. That purchase was a visit from Colin. The education I received from this man is beyond description. I have never crawled into bed at night so tired, yet unable to fall asleep because of all the information that my brain was still processing. It was as if my brain was too busy working on all the things I had learned earlier to allow my body to fall asleep until it was done.merriam-webster wrote: Value ˈval-(ˌ)yü noun
1: a fair return or equivalent in goods, services, or money for something exchanged.
I won't go into detail all the things we covered as I'm not sure my brain has had enough time to digest everything much-less regurgitate it here in any intelligent way. Let me just say that I am empowered. I have confidence to do things I didn't before. For example, two years ago I was taught to adjust my valves by a guy who had never done a valve adjustment before. Wha??? Well that person was me because there was no one else handy at the time that knew any better. Sure I read everything I could find and mustered the courage to do them because you have to. It was so nice to have someone watch you do them and educate your ignorance so that now I KNOW I'm doing them properly and now I can adjust the valves in engines with both solid AND hydraulic lifters (meanwhile the sliding-door fairy appeared and now the doors on both of my buses are like butter!). If that weren't enough, I can adjust the air/fuel mixture on both my carbureted AND fuel-injected engines. I can do, or at least have the courage to try to do so very much more than I did the day before. The how-to-do is fine, but the why-to-do and how everything fits together that Colin explains makes it so much more comprehendible. This folks, is value.
As wonderful as the day was, I must share with you two regrets I have. The first is that my mind was so busy focusing on the VW-related mechanical tasks at hand that I could not divide my attention enough to fully enjoy the conversation and insights this man also provides on issues non-VW related. Hopefully there will be a next year and I'll be able to experience everything even more.
My other regret is time. Who doesn't need more of that? We all have to divide our time amongst many things. Family, work, hobbies, and even time for ourselves. I did the best I could, but I wasn't able to block out enough time for Colin's visit. Yes, I did the ten hours as scheduled, but by the end of that ten hours my attention was beginning to wane as I knew my time was needed elsewhere. I could easily have spent another four or five hours and perhaps even another full day with this guy not just working on my cars, but enjoying the stimulating and thought-provoking conversation with the man, not just the mechanic.
If you've had the pleasure of a visit from Colin, you know that everything I've written or am capable of writing doesn't even come close to capturing the true experience that it is. You are sitting there nodding, I can feel it. If you are on the schedule for this year, look forward to it even more. If he does this next year, do what it takes to get yourself on the list. You will discover that the word 'value' will be completely redefined in your mind.