Thursday, July 1, 2010

You Have to Laugh Really!

Cartoon by Cathy Thorne

For those of you who don’t know me, this little tale might seem unfortunate. It might even glean a smidgen of sympathy. For those  who do know me, it is just another episode in the life of Ann. And as usual, you may smile; laugh even, while shaking your head in wonder. The simplest of things tend to become very complicated in my world …

 I arrived home from Portugal yesterday to find my car was dead. To be precise my car battery was dead. I was not fazed because I have a battery charger, which I attached and waited, as one does. After what I thought was adequate time to charge the battery, I sat into the car and turned the key. I needed groceries. I cleaned out the fridge of all perishables before my five-day sojourn to Portugal.The car coughed once and returned to its comatose state. I was going no-where. Checking the charger I discovered its fuse had blown. I disengaged the battery charger, closed the bonnet, and retreated back into the house flopping on the sofa in abject defeat. Later scouring the cupboard I found four chocolate goldgrain biscuits and a packet of crisps. Dinner!

With the new dawn, defeat was shaken off and I was ready to tackle this dead battery thing again. I walked into town and purchased six fuses just to be on the safe side. Today was market day in the square and I purchased a few tasty treats for myself. I thought I deserved it.  When I got home after changing the fuse in the charger, I again connected it to the car. Sighing with relief, came inside made my first pot of Barry’s tea in a week and a plate of my tasty treats with brown bread. Proper dinner!

After what I thought was ample time for said battery to charge, I went outside to give it a try. Did you guess…"Dead Jim," as Scotty would say to Captain Kirk! I had made arrangements to meet my sister-in-law, Breda in town for coffee and a chat. I was walking again. I consoled myself with thoughts of, this is good for me, look at all the exercise I'm getting and it is a beautiful fresh sunny afternoon.

Now I brought my notebook computer with me, because I was also having an issue with that. But hey, one issue per post!

I related my long-winded dilemma to Breda and her husband Hank. Hank said he had jump leads and would be happy to help me out. I was thrilled. Things were looking up again.

The car had to be moved out of the driveway to attach the jump leads. All went very smoothly. Jump leads did their job, car turned over. I closed the car door, put it into gear, pulled out into the middle of the road and it died just as Breda and Hank rounded the corner and out of sight.

Next issue! I tried to call Breda on the mobile phone, but for some peculiar reason I kept getting the signal you get when dialling incorrectly. Keep in mind here that the car is still in the middle of the road!!!! Frustrated at this point, I put it  into neutral, and tried to push the thing into the driveway. Needless to say, I did not succeed.

Time was marching on and I had a ticket for a cinema screening of an opera that was starting at 7PM. I couldn’t leave the car in the middle of the road and go to the opera. I ran down the street and knocked at  Joe Foley's door, a friend of my husband’s family, who owns a garage. I gave him a quick synopsis of my dilemma. He very graciously came up to the house and jumped the car again. It worked again. He then connected my little battery charger with its new fuse, telling me it would take about three hours to fully charge.

By this time it was too late to go to the opera. So with a sigh of resignation, I gave up that ghost. Joe called back three hours later to see how things were progressing charge wise.

Tomorrow morning, he is calling at 9:30. He will jump the car and follow me to the garage so I don’t get stranded. The time has come to pull out the big guns!!! You have to laugh really.


Old Kitty said...

Oh Ann!! My soul sister separated at birth! :-)

Oh dear. I'm so sorry you missed the opera!!What a shame!!! I hope you get to go again though. And WELCOME BACK from Portugal!!!

Your dinner sounded lovely!! I liked it and you got to eat BREAD which is good for you! :-)

And I thought you coped wonderfully under such crisis!!!

Life has to be one big drama or else it gets boring is my excuse if such horridness happens to me (and they frequently do -LOL!). It's just awful you missing the opera though.

I hope your car is up and running now? I hope so!!!

Take care

Brigid said...

Ann, car stress, I know that lonely road.

You poor thing, the only good thing is you got your Barrys tea and bread and the weather is keeping good for you.
Lovely post, good luck with the big guns today, I hope they dont do that whistling noise they did when I brought Lottie in.

arlee bird said...

That was an engaging tale, albeit a sad one. Nothing quite so unpleasant as coming home from a trip to find problems at home. Oh well, back to the real world I guess.

Tossing It Out

Ann said...

Hi Kitty, I am hoping the car will be sorted out later today. My life in general is like a constant episode of the Keystone Cops. Really, my doings keep all associated with me greatly entertained. First thing everyone asks me each day as I arrive to work before I even get the coat off is, well what happened since we saw you last.

Hi Brigid, Got the car to the garage. Hopefully it will be sorted this afternoon. As I walked home after dropping the car it started to rain. I looked up at the sky and there was blue skies and sun shining to my left and to my right. The big dark rain cloud was right above my head! I kid you not!!! Some sort of cosmic message do you think?

Hi Lee, Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. I don't have to come home to face the real world. It follows me wherever I go. I wouldn't know what to do with myself if that changed.

Theresa Milstein said...

I'm sorry you missed the opera! How lousy. But you have nice neighbors and friends, so that's a bonus. And I'm impressed you know enough about cars so you were able to try to solve the problem yourself.

And the dinner didn't sound too bad.

What's wrong with your laptop? How was Portugal?

Hart Johnson said...

I HATE HATE HATE car stuff. It is part of why I don't protest at having my husband be the person who has our only one 90% of the time--it's his headache. I'd rather walk or take the bus.

Good to have helpful people to call though!

Padraic Murray said...

I would not conclude that it was a message from God not to take holidays. It may prove however a theory that cars have their own personalities, not to mention battery chargers!

Lydia Kang said...

Ugh, I had a dead car battery problem this week. But it wasn't as complicated as yours! Glad you finally got that solved. Have a better, happier weekend!

Catherine said...

Hi Ann - I was in the market briefly yesterday getting eggs but had to meet hubby at the country store for some garden barrels for our banana tree overload (and I have the discount club card!) so didn't hang about - just had a chat with Simon (garden plants in farmer's market) and dashed off. It was a beaut day there. Poor you with the car trouble. I hate car problems and seem jinxed with batteries. always running down. Was in a house in Ring one day and forgot to turn off the radio and lights - flat as a pancake when I emerged 15 mins later. Lucky I was able to call Tommy Kiely to come and charge it up. He is my lifeline in Ring and I'd say he dreads when I turn into his garage - always an emergency of sorts. You seem to be having a busy holiday - Portugal sounds like a a nice respite. Hope we'll link up soon for lunch!
Good luck with the car!
Catherine x

Rachna Chhabria said...

I sympathize with you, car stress can be really bugging. Glad the problem was sorted out. Here is hoping you have no car trouble in future

Ann said...

Hi Theresa, Portugal was lovely. Got quite a bit of writing done as I sat under an umbrella hiding from the sun!

Hi Hart, I agree with you, walking or public transport does not require one to remember to fill the car with petrol or turn off the radio!

Hi Padraic, I think my car battery and battery charger are the devil in disguise!

Hi Lydia, Delighted you stopped by and left a comment. Glad to hear your dead battery was an easier fix than mine. Weekend has been sunny so far. :)

Hi Catherine, we must have just missed one another at the market. I have people who hide when they see me coming with my car problems. I have taken to wearing dark glasses and a baseball cap disguise to catch them out!

Hi Rachna, Delighted you stopped by and thank you for leaving a comment. Car is all better now.

Talli Roland said...

Welcome back from Portugal, Ann! Hope you've recovered from all your trauma, argh. Sounds like you need another vacation to recover now!

niamh said...

Welcome back from your trip - hope that went more smoothly than the adventures with the car!! Good thing you have a great sense of humour!

jinksy said...

Don't know about the opera, but it seems like the car got on your top notes...!! :)

Al said...

I always say "you have to laugh, 'cause otherwise you'd cry".
But what the heck, a writer takes an opportunity like this as grist for the mill. So in the end you're ahead!