Monday, July 25, 2011

Best Laid Plans . . .

Today was ever so well planned, as are several upcoming days this week. I'd kill three birds with one stone, to adapt ever so slightly an old cliché: one trip to the little city down the hill, three doctor's appointments in one afternoon. Optometrist. Oncologist. Dermatologist. And probably some time between appointments to make some progress on a strange novel someone I can't remember recommended.

Kindle Archives

Kindle in hand, I jumped in my car, turned the key, saw the icon lights flash, heard a little burp from the starter, then nothing.  Turn off, try again, seriously nothing. Nothing but a little red padlock icon in the lower left of the dash.  Is my steering wheel locked?  No. Try another key. I got the brief flash, no starter burp, then nothing.

Now, there is a pick up truck parked by the side of my garage, but because it is driven so seldom, its batteries (yes, two of them) are dead. Brother-in-Law and I have tried recharging them, but they don't hold. Purchasing new batteries was on the post-vacation list, but not the first thing. I stuck the key in the ignition but held no hope, since the electronic key wouldn't even unlock the door.

I called the car dealer -- also in the little city down the hill -- to see whether a service person had a clue about what was wrong, just in case there was something simple like, well, I don't know. Otherwise I would have tried it. There was a disturbing ticking noise emanating from the area of the dash, and thoughts of bomb, explosion, tickled my mind. (Too much "Flashpoint.") It certainly sounded to him like the car should be towed to a dealership to be checked out. I began contemplating cancelling appointments. Rats! I'd have to reschedule them as well.

No matter what I did, I clearly wouldn't make the optometry appointment, so I cancelled that one. But before I dumped them all, I started phoning for a possible ride. I have nothing on my calendar Tuesday and can deal with my automotive situation then. My Sister-in-Law wasn't available, and Sister and Brother-in-Law had taken off to Yosemite for the day, so I tried Josie, my friend and cat sitter. She saved the day and we had some fun shopping and having dinner (well, fast food) out.

The more I think about my car, the more I wonder. I'm just two payments away from paying it off on a 48-month loan. Now what are chances that the battery is a 48-month battery, and the car had been sitting on the lot for awhile before I bought it, and now its expiration date is up? Tomorrow I'm going to look for a local guy who can scare up some battery-testers and batteries and see whether we can't get me back on wheels without needing a tow down the hill to the dealership in the little city.

See you tomorrow.



  1. I love a small town! Two hours after I called the mechanic, I have three new batteries installed, two vehicles up and running. No tow truck involved. Thank goodness I paused and thought it through before renting cars and calling tow trucks.

  2. Now drive thaqt truck down the hill. Lots can fit into it that won't fit into your SUV.

  3. I think it was international car problem day! Mine turned out to spark plug wires - at least that's what we know so far. Little things can strand us - batteries, belts, wires. At least we are both up and running!