Friday, January 30, 2009

A Week in Review

Hello all. Welcome to another edition of a “Week in Review”. I’m in kind of in a mood today, so this may be moody. Fair warning.

For Crying Out Loud
It’s been a crap week. I’m not going to lie to you, or try to pretend otherwise. Remember last week when I said that I had to put the brakes on spending money and pay off some bills ASAP? Well, the day after writing that my car started having trouble. It didn’t want to start Saturday or Sunday morning. I got it started, but it was some work. I talked to Barry about it at dinner on Sunday, and he was sure that the fuel filter was clogged. So, I went to a Jiffy Lube on Monday, got a new filter and was on my way. Problem solved, I thought.

Wednesday I was on I-215 on my way home from work when I heard a terrible rattling sound coming from under the hood. Terrible rattling. The car was still moving along well, so I drove to my usual exit and pulled into the same Jiffy Lube that had replaced my fuel filter. Maybe a bolt came loose? They popped the hood, and found that a belt and the pulley that it was attached were falling off. Great. I could still drive, so I went home, called my mechanic and told them that I’d be in the next morning.

Thursday I dropped the car off. The shop people didn’t think that a belt and pulley would take much time or money, which was a relief. I got a ride to the train, and then went to work. While at work, I remembered that back in November, when I got my annual inspection, the inspection place gave me a warning on one of the tie rods. I had asked my dad about it, and he said that a tie rod is connected to the steering, and that he once had one break while he was driving and went right into the ditch. He was on a gravel country road with no one around, so no harm done. I thought about the consequences of that same thing happening to me on I-15 during rush hour, and it didn’t look pretty. I was remembering all of this yesterday and decided to call the shop and ask them to take a look at the tie rod. They said that it was in very bad shape, so I told them to replace it. They assured me that everything would be done by the end of the day.

So, after work I took the train and then walked to the shop (a short walk, maybe 20 minutes). When I got there I was told that my car wasn’t done yet, so I sat down to wait. And wait and wait and wait. The mechanic doing the work realized that he was missing a part to the pulley that was being replaced, so someone ran to a dealership to get that piece. Once back, they all realized that they had gotten the wrong piece, and someone ran back again to get the right piece. By the time they had what they needed, it was well after 6:00, which is their closing time, and they told me that they couldn’t get it done. Insert a string of obscenities here. They loaned me a car to get home with, and promised to have everything done by 9:30 this morning. I went back today, the work was done, and I paid them $530, and got in my car and went to work. $530, at a time when I’m not suppose to spend any money at all. Doesn’t it too often feel like it’s just impossible to keep a goal? I decide to tighten the purse strings, and within days my car falls apart. Nice. How ironic.

The truth is, I probably should have bought a new car a couple of years ago. I had a window of financial opportunity then, when I really could have done it. But my car was fine then, and I couldn’t see taking out a loan and another monthly payment when I didn’t really need to. I kind of regret that now.

But, when I think about it, I realize that I really love my car. We’ve been together for 12 years and 240,000 miles. It’s taken me from San Francisco to Wichita, Kansas, to Minnesota and Chicago. We’ve been through 2 break-ins and one theft. Yes, it was actually stolen a couple of years ago, and I got it back. It’s taken me for long drives when I needed to get away – it’s seen me cry my eyes out. It’s heard my prayers at times when I was desperate for help and spoke out loud to God. Together, we've taken the kids for drives, listened to countless hours of Disney tunes and "High School Musical". It's heard the best singing I've ever done. This car has been with me through the best and worst years of my life. So really, how can I just get rid of it? I don’t know that I can. Not yet anyway.

I do have to wonder, even though the repairs were stressful and expensive, if maybe there wasn’t some divine intervention involved in making that belt and pulley fall off on Wednesday? Like I said, it led to me replacing the tie rod, and if I hadn’t done that, and it had broken on the freeway, I would have been in a serious accident. Maybe this wasn’t such a crap week. Maybe this was a week in which I saw some evidence of Heavenly Father watching over me? I’d like to think so.

There, I feel better now that I’ve gotten all of that out. Thanks for listening.

I did warn that I’m moody today.

Lets move on.

The Store
One of the supervisors at DB left a couple of weeks ago, and I learned on Tuesday that my friend Melanie will take his place. Hooray! She’ll do a great job, and it’s so nice to have a good supervisor. I’m really glad that she got this promotion – for her sake and mine.

I signed up for my next online class through BYU this week – British Literary History. Sounds fancy, huh? I’m looking forward to it. The syllabus lists a lot of old, old classics. Should be very interesting.

Jane Eyre
Speaking of classics, I was felling like reading one, so I started “Jane Eyre”. It’s been years since I read it. Loved it then, and am loving it now. I’ve collected copies of “Jane Eyre” over the last few years. I got the idea from a movie – one of the characters collected the book, and I thought that was kind of cool. I’ve found some nice hardbound copies in stores, and ordered an old, old copy of off, and my collection is getting to be a good one. When I see a nice or original looking edition, I grab it.

The BBC did a two part miniseries in 2006 staring Ruth Wilson and Toby Stevens. It’s very good, really very good. I’m sure you can rent the DVD now. If you haven’t seen it, you should. Hey! Now that I can post videos I can share a trailer through the magic of YouTube. Here you go:

So dramatic!

Well, I think that’s it for now. This has gotten long! Thanks, as always, for your continued excellence.
You are loved.


Tiffany said...

I'm so glad you got your car fixed, even though it cost a butt-load. I'd like to think that $530 costs less than having your neck re-attached to your head and all your fingers gathered from the freeway.

And I hope you will still be friends with me when I admit that I have never read Jane Eyre.

Sorry to dump that load on you when you're moody. Have a lovely weekend!

Kelli said...

I totally think you were being inspired! I am glad you got everything fixed even if it did put a large dent in your savings plan!

Elise Peterson: said...

Yay for Melanie! I must say, it was well deserved and long overdue! And it's nice to know someone loves Jane Eyre the way I love Jane Eyre :) Thanks a million for letting me borrow your DVD. I loved it!!