hate em when they don't.
Last week, I bumped into a friend of mine at the library. We got to
chatting. Then we went for coffee (well, I drank tea and she had a
peach shake, but it was at a coffee shake, did you really need to know
that, no, but now ya do). We ended up parting very late.
I hopped on the interstate and cruised on north a bit, and noticed my
"check gauges" light lit up. So, I checked the gauges (cuz I'm good
that way). And I noticed that I was running a little warm (ok, I was
hot, but the engine was running a little warm, wink).
Then, just as I merged onto an east bound extension of another
interstate highway, I saw the "check engine" light come on. I thought,
hm, well, ok...but here? I don't THINK so.
Turns out I didn't have a choice.
Cuz right after that, as I was nearing the exit ramp from that
interstate to the road that goes home, my car did a shake, shimmy,
hump, shudder, and bump. All power was lost so I coasted as far off
the road onto the shoulder as I could. and popped the hood. No smoke
so THAT was a good sign.
There were lots of lights overhead, because this was a new interstate
extension. So, as I rooted around in the trunk for my big ol'
flashlight (it's a mega mag-lite, ya gotta love that), the FIRST
patrolman pulls over. He was friendly. Not helpful. But friendly.
That's a plus, in my book.
Then I remember while I am chatting with the officer that OH, yeah, my
flashlight was in the front of the car so that if ever I felt I needed
to have a heavy wand to crack someone's nuts, well, it'd be right
handy. So, I go searching for it. So thankful I was wearing jeans and
not a flirty skimpy lil ol' swishy skirt.
Flashlight in hand, I headed for the popped hood. When another police
officer pulls up. He is not happy. He was helpful. But not happy.
Very suspicious. Yes, I staged this so that I could meet my connection
and get my fix, wow, you are too smart for me. But he did call AAA on
his cell phone for me. Though he was NOT happy about it. Still he was
So then as I find the problem and am laughing like a loon, a road-side
stranded loon at that, a THIRD officer pulls up. Of course, I am
appearing as though I might be on drugs, and thusly a menace to
society, so he approaches with caution and is not happy either. But
neither was he helpful, because there was nothing for him to do
really. AAA was on their way.
He did however insist that I explain the whole thing. I mean it wasn't
enough that I am standing there holding an incredibly long belt which
did not break, but slipped in one intact loop right off ALL my
pulleys. Cuz that belt drives the entire engine. It's not obvious to
him that I am having engine problems of major proportions.
Or maybe he was wondering why I was reacting as I was. I already
assured him that Officer A and B had been by. That AAA was on their
way. That I felt reasonably safe until the tow guy got there and that
I would be fine riding home with the tow guy (after all, I had my handy
dandy nut cracking mega mag-light).
After he left, I put the belt in the back of my car, on the floor
behind my driver's seat. I slammed the trunk. I slammed the hood. I
got all nice and comfy in the driver's seat and pulled out my book
because the light was THAT good.
The 4th officer comes to see me, by now, I am tired. More than a
little loopy. I haven't taken any of my meds. Cuz I am not supposed
to drive on them, and although I wouldn't be driving, I wanted to be as
alert as possible. But I had a sack of the Rx from the store in the
back seat. The officer shines his light around the interior of the
car. My eyes are bloodshot and I am developing a tic under my right
eye. My hands are shaking when I show him my Driver's License upon
request. He demands to know why I am so nervous.
So, I tell him, well, it's been a rough few HOURS and you're the fourth
officer to stop by and I appreciate the safety that implies, but the
strobe lights from your flashers are wrecking havoc on my system. He
asks me to step from the car. I was going to, but just then the
wrecker pulled up and so the officer backed off and gave me my license
back. He stayed long enough to ascertain that the wrecker was indeed
spoda tow me home.
Then he left. The car and I got home around 4:30 am. The belt slipped
off because the tension pulley was crooked. SO replacing the belt and
pulley, parts and labor, and tow (cuz AAA covers only one tow per
incident) ran about $300.
My guy of course came to my rescue. I generally am a cheap date. I'm
generally low maintence. (much to the chagrin of my southern female
friends who try and try to do something with my hair, makeup, clothing,
etc. but ya know, it's just not ME) I like to pay my rent, electric,
gas, insurance, phone, and garbage on time, if not early. And that's
So this car has been good to me and my guy, cuz he uses it too.
Whenever we are together, this is what we take. Other than oil
changes, new tires, this is the only thing gone wrong. So, that's not
too bad. Especially since I've had the car for 2.5 yrs and it's a 1993.
I appreciate him covering this. I really do. But I don't ask for much. Really.
Just a car that runs.
To paraphrase Meredith Brooks:
That's all I need, see how easy I am to please?