Merry Christmas! The season is in full swing. Are you frazzled yet? Hopefully not so much so that you’ve gone cross-eyed and can’t read, because I’m doing A Week in Review.
Would you believe it?
I got into a car accident. It was minor. I’m not hurt. My car is a little dented, and my psyche freaked, but I’m ok.
It happened after Christmas devotional. The whole day had been great. Church was good, I had a nice afternoon, nap included, and then the devotional was wonderful. We had good seats down close to the stage. In fact, we were close enough to get on TV! Here’s the link if you’re interested. We’re along the bottom of the screen during the first chorus of “The First Noel”.
After devotional I walked around Temple Square to see the lights and the nativity, and then slowly made my way back to the parking lot. It was all so beautiful. My little heart felt warm and happy.
Driving through town I realized that I was pretty hungry, and then remembered that I hadn’t gotten to the store on Saturday, and had literally nothing at home to eat. Maybe a drive-thru? No, it’s Sunday, and I was just at the First Presidency Devotional. But I really was hungry, so I caved and went to McDonalds. I pulled into the parking lot and saw a car backing out of its space up ahead of me, so I stopped to let it pull out and go. While sitting there, I saw out of the corner of my eye something coming right at me. It was big and dark, and I went for my horn, but it was too late, bam – right into my door. My first thoughts, “It was such a good day. I knew I shouldn’t have come here.”
We did the exchange of information. Luckily the other party has insurance. We didn’t bother with the police (I later learned that they probably wouldn’t have come to a parking lot anyway). The people were nice about giving me their names and number, so I just took that and left. They did ask that I get an estimate on the damage and then call them before calling the insurance company because they might want to pay for it out of pocket. Ok, that was fine with me.
I got an estimate on Monday - $1600. Body work is really expensive. Tuesday I called the people with the numbers. I got their voicemail, so I gave them the cost and asked them to call me back. He called that afternoon all angry that it was going to cost so much. “Your car isn’t even worth that much money! You need to go to two or three places for estimates. Don’t tell them how much the others were. That’s how it works. You go to three places.” What? This guy backs into my car, and now is barking all kinds of instructions at me? I told him that I was going to call the insurance company to see if they had preferred body shops, and then would take it to one of those. He pretty much hung up on me. Nice. When I called the company I just filed a claim and am never talking to that guy again. The insurers can handle it from here.
On Wednesday I took the car to the shop that put a new clutch in a few months ago to get the clutch adjusted. This was just maintenance work, nothing to do with the accident. I asked them to be careful with the driver’s door, because it’s bent, and there’s a dent in the front fender, and the two panels pull on each other when opening and closing the door. When I went back to get the car, the dent was gone, and the door and fender didn’t get caught up any more, and I thought, “Hey they fixed it! Oh no! I have an insurance claim on that.” The damage that I had reported to the company wasn’t there. Visions of being arrested for insurance fraud ran through my head. Of course, the mechanics meant well. They're very nice. But still, insurance fraud!
That same evening a girl from the insurance company called to set up a time when she could come inspect my car, and we met for that yesterday. I told her about the mechanic popping out the dent and she asked, “So did they just think they’d do you a favor?” I guess so. It was kind of funny then. There are still other dents and scratches, and the door is sticking in the frame, so she had plenty to look at. She said that she’ll file her report today, and then I’ll hear from the company about payment. I was so relieved after she left, like my part in this whole thing was over. She didn't accuse me of anything, the damage really isn’t so bad, and I can still drive the car just fine while waiting for the money to fix it. All’s well that ends well.
You know, it’s strange, I felt a lot of guilt those first few days. That guy talking to me like he did about the estimate and how I was supposed to be handling things really upset me. It took a while to shake that off. A person has to know where to draw the line when taking responsibility. Being at McDonalds was probably a mistake, but that accident was not my fault. I don’t owe that guy anything.
I suppose an accident is the perfect end to my car's year. First a pulley and belt fall off, then the starter core burns out. Several hoses have broken, and I had to replace the clutch. And for the grand finale....someone crashes into it. For crying out loud. It's like the drum roll and cymbal crash and the end of the overture.
I have this fun thing that I do. When people in Utah complain about how cold it is, I say something about growing up in Minnesota and how cold it is there. This usually ends with something like, “You people don’t know cold!” Ha! It’s probably fun only for me. Others are irritated, but I’m going to keep doing it. It’s important to give people a sense of perspective. But, this week I’ll give Utah their complaints about the cold. This morning it was 5 degrees. Single digits is cold. But, I would like to point out that the current temperature is 27 degrees, according to The Weather Channel, and in my hometown it’s 11. I just wanted to make that distinction.
We had our department Christmas social today. Elders Perry and Holland were there, and each shared a short message. It’s always so great to be at meetings with them. I love being here. I really do. In fact, on Sunday when I was walking around temple square, I stood looking at the temple itself, all surrounded by Christmas lights and thought, “I love being a Mormon. It’s awesome.” And it really is.
Here’s today’s Christmas Countdown scripture:
8 And he shall be called Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Father of heaven and earth, the Creator of all things from the beginning; and his mother shall be called Mary.
Thanks, as always, for all of the blogging fun.
You are loved.