January 30, 2007

Check Engine, Check Credit Card Limit

I felt a little dizzy yesterday, but if you think I'm going to Google "pregnancy" and "dizzy" you should Google "crazy" and "you must be." I am still jumpy from the time I looked up "pregnancy" and "headache."

We have a minivan and a truck, and Paul normally drives the truck to work. The truck's "check engine" light came on the week before last, and so he is driving the minivan and I am stuck with no vehicle. I was thinking it would only be for a few days, but now we are well into Week Two and I am trying to suppress hallucinations of caterpillars covering the walls. Last night I took the truck to the repair place (we are procrastinators even when desperate, and then we had to wait a bit for an appointment), and this morning they called. It was this kind of call: "Well, the 'check engine' light came on because of an exhaust leak, which we can fix for $370. And while we were in there..." and I tune out until the end of the sentence, which is, "...and all that would come to an additional $1100 or so."

I hate this kind of thing, where people are telling me about things that will cost money, and I don't know if I'm supposed to believe them or not. Maybe they're sitting around on the other end of the line taking bets on whether the sucker is going to do the 100,000-mile replacements at 75,000 miles just because they used the "concerned" tone of voice. Or maybe the "belts" and "pumps" (or whatever it was I wasn't listening to) really are going south, and I'll be sorry when something snaps at 70 mph and Paul is killed in the resulting pile-up and inferno, all because I thought I was being so savvy.

Well, we're fixing the exhaust leak. And then we're going to do the 60,000-mile check/replace thingie we inadvertently blew off 15,000 miles ago because we can't seem to keep track of these things. And maybe we can get them to fix the quirk where the "door ajar" light beeps at us alarmingly every 15 seconds even though the doors are firmly shut. But I'm not replacing the belts 25,000 miles earlier than the maintenance schedule says to. See what they've driven me to? I'm checking maintenance schedules. This is not how I want to live my life.

1 comment:

desperate housewife said...

I feel that perhaps our lives are weirdly synchronized. I too am carless at the moment- not really a big problem, as it is so snowy and cold now that I cannot bear the idea of making any unnecessary trips. But it still makes you feel a little crazy, knowing that you CAN'T ESCAPE.
I am also with you on frustrating car expenses. My passenger-side backseat door got rear ended in an Applebee's parking lot last Christmas, and the crash bar was broken. No one ever sits on that side of the car, so we have not bothered to get it fixed even though we got the insurance money and everything a year ago. Now, we have to get it fixed since there will soon be a carseat on both sides of the car, and guess what? Hmm, that insurance money amazingly has disappeared.