Feb 13, 2009

Friday the 13th


KM's best friends -twins who live two states away - were born on 2/14. I received a phone call about 2 weeks ago BEGGING me to bring KM for their birthday party. We had not seen them in quite awhile and it worked out that I did not have SC on the weekend in question, so to quiet the squealing tweens I agreed to make the trek.

Since the sleepover was being held on Friday, I figured I would be able to be back by late Saturday afternoon to still spend Valentine's Day with CJ. We left right on time and everything was going great! We made it through Boston with no traffic, Rt 1 was clear sailing, and we made it to the Burger King just in time to not have to wait in line. I thought for sure everything was going to be fine! Then suddenly as I was coming to the crest of a hill, the car felt funny. It was as if I had hit the cruise control off, but I could not accelerate. I pulled to the side of the turnpike and my car died!

I must interject here to state that my ride is not really fancy, it is a Land Rover Freelander that I have had for just over 5 years. I have NEVER had ANY problems with it. Other than regular maintenance I have not had to spend a penny. It has under 50,000 miles on it, as most of my driving is within a 10 mile radius.

Now back to the story - I swear I thought my head was going to explode!!!!! What do I do? I am in another state. I barely know where I am. The neurotic over packer, only packed one change of clothes and one set of pj's for each of us, as we were only suppose to be staying overnight. I did not pack extra snacks or drinks as I knew we were going to be stopping at the same rest area we always do. So here I am the one who is always prepared for everything, TOTALLY UNPREPARED FOR THIS!

I call CJ and of course immediately start FREAKING out! I have no idea what I am going to do. I am not unfamiliar with the workings of a car, I took mechanics in high school, my grandfather was a mechanic, CJ is obsessed with Jeeping, my brother-in-law is a mechanic, and my father drag races and has been featured in several racing magazines. Yet here in this situation, where I have no control and there are HUGE trucks and cars whizzing by me at 80-90mph I can not think of what I am suppose to do! CJ of course is also freaking out at the thought of me broken down on the highway, but he talks me through checking everything as best as he can. This is no use as everything that I can check is fine!

Back into the car I go and we begin thinking. Okay I have a Land Rover, hey they have this really good roadside assistance program which is the reason why I do not have AAA. So we call them up and I am told that the nearest dealer - which is the only place that they can tow me to, is 58 miles away and they will only cover tows if they are under 50 miles. ARE YOU KIDDING ME!

Okay next option - have the computer limited CJ look up a local tow service in the town that is listed on the only sign that I can see on the highway. NOT GOING TO WORK - I love him, I truly do, but he is just not computer savvy AT ALL. I think for a second and as I turn my head to the right I spot my GPS - DUHHHHH. I pull up the menu and locate the closest gas station - I love my GARMIN!!! it even listed the phone number! I called and they were only a gas station, but the attendant was sooooo helpful. He gave me the name of a station right around the corner and even looked up the phone number for me!

CJ was of course very leery of me going to some totally random auto shop to have my car worked on - see above mentioned reasons as to why this maybe so... - but I was very optimistic, when the man who answered the phone new right off the bat that they need to send out a car carrier to get me as my vehicle is AWD!!! Most mechanics don't even know what a Freelander is - they only made them for 3 years and as I mentioned they RARELY break down!

----Homeschooling Side Note---- KM was in the back of the car during this whole panic attack inducing affair with her headphones on and doing her SCOPE magazine assignment. She didn't even realize that there was anything wrong until I got out of the car before the tow truck got there!!!

So they came in no time to rescue us. When we walked into the shop, the very nice man behind the counter said "What were you thinking trying to travel on Friday the 13th!" Well gee thanks!!! I began to state how I am not superstitious and I don't think that the date had any relevance to the events of the day, but stopped myself mid sentence when the tow truck driver came up behind him with a not so happy look on his face. "It doesn't look very good!" Great, I thought, I am just going to hold off on my speech as to not tempt any further aggravation of the gods - hmmmm maybe I am a little superstitious. I sit down and wait for them to run the diagnostics.

Minutes later they come out to tell me my fuel pump is junk! FANTASTIC!!! I know that on a "normal" car this would run about $300-400. The man calls around and finds one that is $975 - are you KIDDING ME! Well I don't really have a choice now do I. So the man gets back on the phone and goes about getting the parts and I go about trying to find a way to get out of this place!

A few minutes later the man calls me into his office. He says he has called several locations and not only do they need the part, but they need a special tool because it is a Land Rover - OF COURSE THEY DO!!! - they could do the work and it would cost me about $1480. I swear I thought my head was going to explode!

He then says, "but today is your lucky day! I called a friend of mine at the Land Rover dealership and apparently there is a recall on your fuel pump!" I could have kissed him! I swear I almost reached over the desk and kissed him! So my car was off to the dealership and will be fixed Monday.

At about this same time I get a phone call that the grandparents of the aforementioned twins we are going to visit are about 20 minutes away and would be more than happy to swing by and pick us up on there way! Yippeee!!! Rescued again!!

KM is very happy that she gets a few extra days with her friends and I get a few days of doing, well not much of anything, but hanging out really. Guess Noni thought I needed a break!

I truly don't feel that I am superstitious, but I think Noni was looking out for me today! Friday the 13th was always a running joke in our house when I was growing up because my parents got me on Friday 10/13/1978! I used to tell Noni that she should have known right then to send me back because I was going to be a handful!!! THANKS NONI for letting me know that you are still there keeping your eye on us! I guess I do believe the date played into the events of the day, but next time Noni, you truly could do something a bit more subtle!!!

Post a Comment