For more than six months, the Zelenchukov family has been working on a bus nicknamed Ferdinand, presented as a “Behind the Wheel”.


On a frosty January evening, Viktor Borisovich Zelenchukov drove into the courtyard of his house on the new ZIL-325010. The bus was solemnly handed over to him at the editorial office of the journal on the morning of the same day (ZR, 2000, No. 3 and 4).

Although the “Goby”, as if justifying its name, often shows a restless character, the family loved it. The nickname Ferdinand, which was given to the car in the editorial office, the Zelenchukovs, having conferred, approved. They added only the number XIII - “Bull-thirteenth”, the youngest child in the family. Now he has an almost noble title. Maybe settled down, a Muscovite will become less naughty?


In the meantime, the foster family constantly tells the editorial board about Ferdinand's tricks. No complaining, no! Bus Zelenchukov satisfied. They just keep godparents in the know.

But sometimes we have to blush for the blood parents of “Goby” - AMO-ZIL. Judge for yourself: for 1300 kilometers he managed to jam the outer bearing of the front right hub (the cage burst). The overrunning clutch teeth scattered and the armature shaft bent. The paint on the front and rear bumpers, wheel disks peeled off, rust appeared everywhere … A very neglected “child”! But he was lucky - he got into a good family, where everyone treats each other with love and care. And a worthy person can grow out of the most “difficult” child.

So dad Zelenchukov took Ferdinand seriously. First of all, I thoroughly prepared the car for work. He turned off the interior door button that was brought out onto the street - so calmer. Adjusted the engine and heater, redid the exhaust pipe. Now, in the parking lot, smoke does not penetrate into the cabin. Woe to the creators with AMO-ZIL, listen! Neither a minibus, let alone a school bus, was to bother passengers!

The bus floor was covered with linoleum. Do not sweep the ribbed standard rubber carpet, nor wash it properly. But the car for the family is the second home. To bring the “Bull-calf” to mind helped older guys, especially the chief motorist San Sanych. The younger ones are generally not ready to get out of the car for hours. After all, this is THEIR bus!

Ferdinand XIII has enough business. You can’t walk on foot to the plot where the Zelenchukovs grow vegetables, and now go to agricultural work and take out the harvest - as easy as shelling pears. Bring food for a cow, namesake bull and other domestic animals …


In mid-June, the editorial office rang. “We are going to visit you!” - said Victor Borisovich. “For the first time we will bring all the children to Moscow!”

On the appointed day, we went to Warsaw highway to meet friends at the entrance to the city. They wondered along the way: how would they get there? Will they be on time? Will the bus fail? From afar they saw: there he was, Ferdinand, with big yellow letters “At the wheel” above the driver's cab! Got it!

Shouts of “Hurray!”, Hugs, greetings vying with each other … Viktor Borisovich talks about the behavior of the “Bull-calf” on the road. Galina Mikhailovna comments: “He can talk about the bus for hours! Ready and live in it, if possible. It’s better to see how we arranged everything here. ” Indeed, it’s just a motor home. There are neat curtains on the windows, there is a “table” and a “buffet” above the driver’s seat - a real pantry with the things needed in the household. And behind are mattresses. “We spread them in the back seats, in the aisle and on the front landing - you can sleep.”

- Oh, mom, what is it? - amazed little Ilyushka.

“It's a tram, it carries passengers like a bus, only on rails, ” one of the older girls explains.

In Belgorod, not to mention Alekseyevka, there are no trams. There are no such tall houses, such wide streets, cars, bright signs and billboards …

It was only three days. There was a river bus, a circus, a walk through evening Moscow. There were breathtaking rides in the culture park - in the pouring rain, but is this really the main thing? It was a fantastic, huge city with many surprises. And then I had to leave. It’s a pity, of course, that the holiday does not last so long.

“Well, nothing, ” said Papa. “This is just intelligence.” Now we know: you can count on Ferdinand. We will return home - we will begin to make plans. ”


What is a bus? The techies will give an exact definition, but now it is completely irrelevant. For a family like the Zelenchukovs, no matter how arrogant it may sound, “Goby” is a new life. Well, where, tell me, could they go with the whole family? To the garden, to the river and to the nearest forest? And all life would be limited to the limits of Alekseevka. And now the whole world is open for them.

No matter how "difficult" the Thirteenth may be, it gives the Zelenchukovs unprecedented advantages. To Belgorod, for 50 kilometers - please. To the market, on holidays, to visit friends from a familiar school - no problem.

“By the 55th anniversary of the Victory, we traveled around the battlefields of the Great Patriotic War - we had the Kursk here! And the children saw it with their own eyes, ”says Galina Mikhailovna.

A person with a car is not just more mobile. He has completely new opportunities. And such a machine as the “Goby” can become the basis of their own business, economic independence. Horizons are expanding, not only history or geography is getting closer - life itself is being known. And people are actively involved in it, in turn changing reality.

Ferdinand's foster family is embarking on new roads. And the stubborn “Bull”, we are sure, will be a good helper to them in this.

“For us, this bus is perfect, ” said Viktor Borisovich. “Unpretentious, simple, runs on cheap fuel, roomy … For a family like ours - what you need!”

P. S. When the material was already ready for publication, the editorial office called the general dealer of the company Webasto, which produces heaters and air conditioners - AVESTO-M. They learned about the Zelenchukovs, about the story with the “stove”, due to a breakdown of which the owner and editorial passengers nearly froze on the way to the Belgorod region. And they suggested: let's put our branded, reliable “stove” on the bus for free. We guarantee excellent quality and long service.

And after a little time, the magazine was contacted by the Moscow company Avtosteklo. Here, they say, we thought here and decided: it is necessary to change the glass in the "Bull". And you yourself write that they are almost windowed, how can you carry children like that! Ready to take it for free. And the products on the "Autoglass", vouch, at the level of international standards.

It turns out that people are ready to support others, humanity and kindness have not disappeared! And the Zelenchukovs with their big family, with a problematic but generally good bus, aroused in someone better feelings, a desire to help. Maybe this relay of responsiveness will continue further, already in relation to someone else …

A Brief Biography of Ferdinand XIII

Index - ZIL-325010.

Year of birth - 2000.

Mileage - 8500 km.

Place of residence - the village of Alekseevka, Yakovlevsky district, Belgorod region.