Thursday, July 5, 2012

Remind me to never complain about lack of blog fodder again, Part Two

Okay, so I left off my last narrative when I was making stroganoff for lunch on Sunday. Scott got up at 1:30, we ate stroganoff, and then I decided to go take a nap. I napped from 2-4, so we really did NOT get a lot of one-on-one time over the weekend, between spending Saturday with his family and spending Sunday sleeping.

So I was kind of cranky going into Monday morning; I felt like I had been cheated out of my restful weekend. (We'd been busy the couple of weekends before that, so I had been very much looking forward to it.) I went to bed around midnight, but could NOT fall asleep. I ended up getting up at about 1:00 and sitting in the living room reading a book of Midshipman Quinn stories that I borrowed from the in-laws and drinking hot cocoa. (Two reasons: 1) There was no point in waking Scott up with my tossing and turning; at least one of us could get some sleep. 2) At a certain point, lying in bed stressing out about how I can't fall asleep is distinctly unhelpful; taking my mind off it by getting up and doing something else is much more productive.) I went to bed again at about 2:15 and still had trouble falling asleep but did so at some point before my alarm went off at 5:45. That didn't exactly put me in a good mood going into Monday morning.

We got up and got ready as usual. We were running a bit late, but if we hurried we could still just make the 7:20 bus.

I turned the key in the ignition, the car sputtered...and nothing happened. I tried a couple more times, because I am nothing if not insane. :) Still no ability to drive the car.

We called Scott's family, of course. Nobody answered, probably because it was 7:15 in the morning. Then we called AAA. (SO happy that my parents renewed my AAA membership last year.) Somehow it had gotten to be 7:30, because I remember the AAA call-answering person saying that the AAA service person would arrive sometime "between now, 7:33, and 8:03, or even before." I made fun of that phrasing to Scott after I hung up. "So they will come between now and half an hour from now, or they might even come BEFORE now!" I am mean when I'm trying not to have an ugly sobbing breakdown over my stupid car that won't start.

Around 7:45 we called Scott's family again. A few minutes later they called back to say that Eldest Younger Brother was getting ready to go and would be along shortly. (We need to buy EYB a video game or something, for all the times he's driven places on our behalf lately. Also, honorary awesome points go to Youngest Younger Brother, who apparently heard our message on the machine and immediately went to wake up EYB.)

Around 7:50, I called AAA again wondering where my service person was. The call-answering person (a different person than the first one) said that the service person was assisting somebody else and would be by when he was done there. I asked if she knew how long that would take, and she just repeated that he would be along once he was done with the person before me. So I said thank you and hung up, feeling even more irritated.

I should note a couple of things: 1) Scott and I currently only have one cell phone between us. 2) Scott had a Schola thing that night, so I really wanted him to have the cell phone so we could figure out stuff relating to the Schola thing. (He can take a bus from his work to the church at which the Schola practices, but he wanted me to meet him there and bring him dinner and his Schola stuff.) But I had given the AAA people my cell phone number, reasoning that it was better to wait by the car rather than in the apartment. So I couldn't send Scott with the cell phone in case AAA tried to call me.

So we worked out that Scott would go straight to Schola from work, do not pass Go, do not collect $200, and that I would meet him there shortly before the Schola thing was supposed to start. He wouldn't need the cell because he would be going straight to an established meeting place, and if he thought of something wrong with the plan he could hypothetically call me from his work phone. Then he decided to run up to the apartment and get his black binder so I wouldn't need to remember to bring it; I'd just have to bring his dinner.

(This whole "only having one cell phone" thing is a fun brainteaser--though I don't find it fun when I have to think on the fly how to work around it.)

A few minutes later (shortly after 8:00), EYB showed up. I stink at giving directions, so I settled for asking Scott if he knew how to get to the bus stop (he said yes) and hoping for the best. Then I went up to the apartment to get Midshipman Quinn to pass the time while I waited for the AAA man.

By 8:30 I figured that EYB and Scott must have made it to the bus stop, because otherwise they would have come back and I would have had to help figure out what to do about the fact that the 8:15 bus is the last commuter express of the morning.

Meanwhile, the AAA service guy showed up around 8:15 (which was later than 8:03; I should complain) and started messing with stuff--testing the battery, doing this, doing that. Finally he declared that he couldn't figure out what was wrong and would have to call me a tow truck so my car could be towed to a repair place.

So he went back to his truck and I settled down with Midshipman Quinn to wait for the tow truck. But a few minutes later AAA service guy tapped on my window and said that he wanted to check one more thing. (I have no idea if he consulted his oracle in the truck or what. I don't really care.)

So he tried resetting the anti-theft system, which involves leaving the key in the "on" position for 10 minutes and then turning the car off and then trying to start it.

That worked. So he packed up and left, I went back up to the apartment to complain on Facebook, and all was well with the world.

Fast forward to this morning. I drive Scott to the bus stop, I turn off the car while we wait for the bus, bus arrives, he gets on, bus drives away, I go to start the car...sputter, sputter, nothing. I think about how Scott just rode off with our only cell phone. I reassured myself with the thought that I'd seen a couple of people coming from the left with shopping bags of pop and cigarettes, so there must be an open store somewhere nearby, which means people, and People Are Generally Nice, Not All Axe-Murderers. (I need to needlepoint that on a pillow.)

Meanwhile, I did the "turn the key to 'on' for ten minutes" thing. Ten minutes is a long time when you're in a deserted parking lot with nothing but the occasional cigarette-toting passerby.

Finally ten minutes passed and I tried again. And the car started. Hooray?

So now I am trying to figure out how to disable this stupid anti-theft system. After all, to quote my mother, "It's not like anybody would want to steal your car."

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