My tool is my wallet. I take it out and pay someone to fix the car.
That’s what it’s going to take to have my car fixed sometime today. I will be picked up tomorrow morning at eight and taken to Exclusively Imports.
I need to explain. It’s embarrassing because I managed to compound the situation.
My life is always filled with details. I’m reminded of the typical conversation between a kid coming home from school, and his mom asks, “What happened in school today?”
“Nothing” (sound familiar?)
My life always has something happen. Today’s embarrassing part is I lost my wallet. I didn’t find out until it was after one in the afternoon. I lost it at eight this morning.
I carefully planned my day. Take Bernie and Chris to the desert for their exercise. Then, take them directly to the groomer to be washed. Jackie works at The Loving Touch and does a terrific job with both dogs.
The rest of the day was SUPPOSED TO BE to come home and put the Casita battery in the car and go to the storage yard and install the battery in the Casita.
Then, early tomorrow morning I would move the Casita to the house and start loading it for our trip to Quartzsite early Friday morning.
I was less than a mile away from The Loving Touch Pet Grooming when I turned the corner, and two things happened.
Immediately I lost all power steering and found myself drifting into the oncoming car lane. A car was approaching forty feet away. It made an evasive maneuver.
At the same time, I desperately hauled on the steering wheel to get my car under control and miss the other car. We missed each other, and I continued driving straight. My battery light glowed bright red. Other gauges appeared to be within their normal operating range.
I still had one left turn to navigate into The Loving Touch parking lot. It took a lot of strength to twist the wheel of a three-ton Toyota SUV without power steering.
The next hour was a mixture of nervous relief, future financial worry and calling USAA to arrange for the tow as well as calling Exclusively Imports to share my situation.
Exclusively Imports has serviced my car for more than seven years. The owners, Mike and Kelly, know my car and treat me wonderfully. Their shop is less than a mile from my home. They always pick me up and bring me home. No charge.
The tow truck came within an hour. The Toyota slid on the metal lift, and within fifteen minutes we arrived at Exclusively Imports. I was home before nine-thirty in the morning.
I’ve used Jackie for more than fifteen years. She said she would bring Bernie and Chris home after she finished work.
With that information, I wasted time around the house for a few hours. I had no idea when the car would be available. I’d just about decided the Casita trip this weekend was off.
Part of the decision concerned what if something else went wrong with the car while we were hours away in the Quartzsite desert?
What will the car repair cost? Am I even in the mood to pack for the weekend?
My pensive mood changed drastically about fifteen minutes later. I decided to check my wallet to pay for the grooming. I expected Bernie and Chris to arrive home within the hour.
My wallet was missing!
It happens. Something happens while driving and results in having to have your car towed. Your entire day is suddenly turned upside down as you fumble through all kinds of options to regain the balance of your carefully planned day.
Part of my fumbling was frantically dipping into my fanny pack to get my cell phone, my wallet, a pen to write stuff on as well as paper (located elsewhere).
Meanwhile, the dogs wanted out to relieve themselves one more time before going inside to the groomer. (It’s always a circus when you have two dogs).
With the missing wallet, I called Kelly at Exclusive Imports and told her to check the inside of the car. She did, and about five minutes later she called and said she had good news and bad news.
The good news was she found the wallet. It was in the passenger seat. (I can’t tell you how many times over the years I’ve come out smelling like a rose with my dumb mistakes).
The bad news was two separate car issues. I have a 2003 Toyota Sequoia with plus 170,000 miles.
Kelly mentioned something about a water pump and something about the radiator. I wouldn’t understand the details if she explained it. I did understand the bottom line. The car will be repaired. The parts replaced and ready by tomorrow morning.
The bad news is my wallet will be returned to me, less $1300 and tax for services rendered.
Christmas is coming early for someone else this year. <sigh>