Apr 29 2012, 7:22 pm / Okay
I have an anxiety trigger regarding my vehicle. I drive a really neat van. I have had it for five years and just paid it off. Of course, you know what happens when that happens. My van has been in the shop at least once a month since December. It's just plain old--17 years--and things are starting to fall apart. When it is all together, it runs well, does what we ask of it, which isn't much--get us to work and back, to the grocery store, our favorite restaurants and events, hauls my bass drum, and so forth.
We just got it back Friday after two weeks of inoperativeness, which necessitated a new radiator. We joyfully went to get dinner, informed our workplace that we could now resume our 4am work start time, and went home confident that it would be fine for awhile.
The next morning, we decided to go get brunch at the new donut shop near our market. Guess what? No juice. I was getting some noise telling me the key was in the ignition, but it would not turn over. I called my roadside assistance for a jump, but he came out, tried to jump it with a "box," was gruff and seemed like he didn't want to be there. He said "it's not the battery," tried jumping it with the assistance car, then said "you need to have it towed" and packed up and went away. I was left quite stunned. I thought I'd let it dry out--it has a tendency to not want to start in wet weather.
Lucky for me, I had a ride arranged to my band's gig that night, which was at the airport, welcoming home a group of World War II veterans who had been flown out to see the WWII memorial in Washington. I was grateful for that. My husband came along, not part of his original plan but he was invited along by my ride, who is a good friend. The trip was supposed to return at 8:30, but because of weather, it didn't get in until after 11:00. By the time we got home, it was 1:30, and we were to be at work at 4am.
Tried starting the van. Now there was no juice at all. Nothing electric worked. Ugh.
We decided to call in to work, due to our extreme fatigue and the van not working. At 4 we called...and called...and called...and couldn't get through. We realized that the phone system at work was out of order--instead of transferring us to a phone that would be picked up by a supervisor, it was hanging up upon transfer. I finally got hold of someone at 8:30 by patching through to the photo lab, because the operator's line was busy.
That's what set off my crisis. I could not go back to bed, except to lie there and have my brain go nuts.
I wanted to give up. I have had it with the vehicle, but right now, we can't afford to get another. I want to go home and have my mother baby me. That's not appropriate, either.
I called for a tow for the van. The guy who showed up was much, much more customer-service oriented than the one who came on Saturday. He asked me what the trouble was, and then offered to jump it himself. He tried, but basically said the positive terminal on the battery was too corroded to get a good grip, and said the trouble was definitely the battery. I pray he's right, and that it is nothing else. It was a great relief for him to say how sure he was.
So I felt better, then--better enough to tackle the huge mound of dishes in the sink, clean the stove, make dinner, and make bread rolls, and play with the guinea pig. I'm exhausted now, from the lack of sleep, but I'm fed, rested, have clean dishes, and got my schedule adjusted so I can go in later to work tomorrow (by bus) and not be late.