What we love most about the way of life that we are living are the people that we meet and the positive things that happen (miraculously) when things go wrong. We just had one such situation happen to us (again). After 7 years and 210.000 Kms on European and North African roads the driver seat decided that it had enough and just broke. I don’t blame the seat as some parts of our trip were pretty rough and we’d bought it used. We never got to know it’s real age but it must have been at least 10 years old. Now getting new seats turns out to be a lot more difficult than expected. In the age of Amazon (or Alibaba) with 24 hours delivery, having to wait 6-8 weeks for something to be produced and delivered is a problem for us. Given the fact that we never stay longer than 2-3 days in one place and that we are on our way to southern France, I could not imagine myself driving on a cork yoga block and some books for much longer.
I spent a whole day calling all kind of dealerships and Landrover Expedition outfitters trying to find some fitting seats for Mike with immediate (or short term) delivery. The message is always the same – nothing available, delivery times are 6-8 weeks at best, no can do.
I have almost given up when I make a last call to Sportsitzhandel in Rosenheim. Ingo Kaufmann the owner is one of those people mentioned in the first sentence. Instead of giving me the standard response I got from everybody else, Ingo says that he will get in touch the manufacturer of Scheel-Mann seats to see if he can get something done quicker. In less than an hour he calls me back to let us know that the Product Manager at Greiner GmbH, Alexander Bojovic, has agreed to squeeze an order into their already full production schedule. In less than 2 weeks our seats will be ready to picked up directly at the factory in Pleidelsheim.
In a phone call with Alexander a couple of days later, he tells me that we can pick up the seats even earlier than envisioned and that we should contact him once we arrive at the factory on Friday, 9-August.
So here we are at 10:00 am to meet with Alexander who immediately offers to help us in dismounting the old and mounting the new seats. While we are at work we are offered cold drinks by his team and we can even leave our old seats with them. Once the new seats are mounted, we are given a factory tour by Alexander. We are impressed by the passion and dedication of the staff that goes into their products and the positive vibes that we pick up. These days it’s rare to find companies like Greiner where staff is treated with respect and everyone is customer focused. In less than 2 hours we have new seats, seen the production, learned about their products and product philosophy and experience first class customer service.
After more than 1.000 Kms on our Scheel-Mann Traveller seats we are now we are at the banks of Ardeche river and we both agree that these seats are fantastic. The quality and ergonomics is superior to anything we’ve had (or to be more precise: sit on) before.
What counts most however is the positive experience in meeting Ingo, Alexander and the team of Greiner.
We are thankful that this trip and lifestyle shows us that there are still people that care and that are willing to go that extra mile to help others.
One Life. Live It!