I am trying to keep my eye on the precious and allusive silver lining on all those terrible thunderclouds circling me at the moment.
Yesterday on the drive to work, I turned a corner and my dashboard orange light came on: Service Engine Soon
. As if the obnoxious light wasn't enough to get my attention, at that very same moment while I was accelerating out of the turn, my car lost power so-to-speak. It stuttered, was sluggish, jerked, you know - scared the living shit out of me! This was half way to work, mid-way through the town of Haysville on the oh so lovely detour around the bridge reconstruction on highway 81.
Luckily, I made it into Firestone - my trusty mechanics- after having near heart failure every time I had to start off the line after a stop. With my engine gasping, hoping I wasn't ruining anything, and praying that nobody behind me was lacking their first of the day caffeine boost to keep them awake and prevent them from both tailgating and rearending me while my car stalled, I barely held on to my sanity and optimism.
Firestone had a plethora of cars in line before me and told me that it was highly unlikely they could get to me. It seemed as though I would be stuck in Wichita until Matt could come pick me up. What was I to do? The only thing I could, I left my car in Dale's capable hands and set off to work via Firestone's courtesy van.
Meanwhile, as I was processing year end data at a maddening rate and taking my blood pressure every hour hoping I wouldn't die from stress and worry, I called and left a message for my husband on his boss' voicemail. About an hour after I left the message, Matt calls, we talk, and arrange that he is to pick me up at 5:30pm in my office building parking lot since my car was going to be at Firestone overnight.
Then, about an hour after I spoke with Matt, Firestone called. Lo and behold, Dale felt very guilty as I am a loyal customer, and bumped me ahead of the non-regulars who brought their cars in for oil changes. As it turns out, this electronic meter that manages the mixture of air and gasoline in the fuel system was filthy, as was my fuel system. Who would have thought that gasoline, oil, and well engines in general were filthy? Note - I am using sarcasm! Gold star for me. Anyway, Dale tells me that he has cleaned the meter, he is going to clean the fuel system, and hopefully, after $255 later, everything will be fine. He said it as if he were crossing his fingers behind his back. I could hear it in his voice that he wasn't so sure that would be the fix.
Still, I called Matt's boss and left another message telling him to tell Matt that I did not need to be picked up after all.
So, feeling releaved that I had escaped a nasty part replacement and the high cost that would have been, I went out to lunch with a co-worker, Sharon, who just happens to love sushi as much as I do. Bamboo Sticks, Sharon's favorite sushi spot for lunch, was empty and we got served right away. Hooray for Spicy Tuna Rolls and wasabe! They certainly take away all angst. Twelve delicious tobiko encrusted pieces later, I was contemplating buying some to-go for Wednesday's lunch, as the sushi chef said the California Rolls would be fine the next day. Another dozen California Rolls tucked away in my bag for lunch tomorrow, and Sharon and I set off to go back to the office.
The afternoon was quite peaceful even with the whirlwind that is year-end processing wipping about me. Theresa generously offered to take me to Firestone and I accepted and we left at 4:45pm.
There was one nagging worry. Matt had never called me to tell me he got my message. I couldn't make up my mind. Should I risk calling his touchy company a third time, possibly totally pissing off his boss to confirm he got my message? Or, should I trust that his boss gave him my message? I could have just gone and sat in the parking lot of my office in my car and waited to see if Matt pulled up having not got the message - but I didn't. I started on my drive home taking a route I knew Matt would take - just in case.
Well, about half way home, just on the Wichita side of Haysville, I see Matt driving towards me. He didn't get my message! His boss never told him not to come get me! I honk, stick my arm and head out the window, and my poor sweet husband, intent on picking me up in Wichita didn't see me. I pulled over and waited about five minutes to see if he perhaps did see me and turned around. He definately didn't. So, I sped off after him hoping to catch up. NOT. Didn't happen. I finally caught up with him. Where? MY OFFICE!
Yes, I had to drive all the way back to my office where he was waiting for me. I can't even relate the amount of road rage I had driving after him. Not only was I extremely pissed off at his boss and the fact that my hardworking, tired husband had to make the trip for nothing, I hit every bloody red light, found every old fart out for his last breath and drive, and most certainly every person walking their stubborn dogs across the main highway 81 on long leashes. These dogs obviously had the desire to become roadkill because they often lunged off the leash causing neurotic cellphone gabbing trophy wife Barbies in their Lexus SUV's to nearly crash into me. Add to all this the fact that three of four streets along my route back to work are caulk full of orange barrels for street construction. Who wouldn't have a conniption fit?
Well, we drove home and everything seemed fine with the car. That is until...
This morning pulling out of the Cessna Credit Union parking lot, the fricking orange dashboard light Service Engine Soon
Off to Firestone I went. As I type this, my car is their being fitted with a new meter ($500 + time and labor). I haven't called Matt to let him know because I don't want a repeat of yesterday. If they can get my car running, he won't have to be troubled like he was yesterday - my poor sweetheart. If they can't get the car running until tomorrow...well, I'll just have to call Matt after work to come get me, and hopefully he won't have gone to Joshua or Joey's to play cards.
Despite all this - I don't want a cellphone! I might be in the market for a new car though if this is the beginning of the end for the Pathfinder.
Man - cars suck!