“It’s not that I can’t handle these situations,” I told DD1 when it was all over, “It’s just that I prefer not to.”
An innocent enough text started it all. It came in as I met with a group of colleagues about plans for a new school building.
“Can I drive to the bank and then to the mall?”
Though it’s still awfully snowy out, only the neighborhood roads continue to present a driving challenge. I decided DD1 could handle getting from our house to the entrance without too much difficulty, so I texted back.
“Okay. Go slow getting out of the neighborhood and text me when you get to the mall and again when you get home.”
When her picture popped up on my ringing phone fifteen minutes later, I knew something had gone wrong. With visions of crumpled cars in my head, I took a deep breath and answered the phone. Much to my relief, it was nothing quite so dire. Instead, DD1 found that her car wouldn’t start when she finished at the bank. She’d called her dad, but he wasn’t answering his phone.
Fortunately, I could run to her rescue. When I arrived, I succeeded in getting the engine started, and we headed for the car dealership about a mile away with me following behind DD1. I called Adventure Guy on the way to let him know of the car issues.
All went well until we had to wait through a very long light just south of the dealership. When the light turned green, DD1’s car refused to move.
I hopped out of my car amidst honking horns, tried and failed to get the car started, and got DD1 into my car. I made another, much more desperate, call to Adventure Guy. Voice mail. We headed to the dealership, hoping they would help us get the car out of the intersection.
The answer from the “service” representative? “Well, I guess you’ll have to call for a tow.” Since we literally could see the intersection and the disabled car from the dealership, this was definitely the wrong answer. I can’t wait for that feedback form to hit my inbox.
I asked DD1 to find the number for roadside assistance as we drove back to the intersection. We parked in a nearby convenience store lot, and then I braved traffic again to put her hood up to alert other drivers of the disabled car. As I trekked back to the parking lot, two men in a plumbing company van asked if they could help me.
They quickly pulled alongside DD1’s car and jumped the battery then went even more out of their way to follow me to the dealership. It was a good thing that they did since the car died yet again as I made the turn into the drive. They hopped out and literally pushed me the rest of the way in–to where the service rep said, “Oh, so you got it out of the intersection?”
Yes. Yes I did, you jerk.
And, then, Adventure Guy called. He knew nothing of our circumstances since his phone showed no missed calls. He felt terrible but said, “Well, it sounds like you have it all under control.” And I did, with a lot of help from an unexpected source. It’s nice to know there are still people around who are willing to take time out of their day to help someone in need.
And I know exactly who to call next time I need any plumbing done.