Thursday, September 06, 2007

Car Repairs & Odds and Ends

Yesterday, just as I was heading to my seminar at UTSA's 1604 campus, my check engine light came on. Even though I've been told that it often isn't an emergency, I find that kind of situation scary. Still, believing what I'd been told, that it was safe to drive the car till I could get it into a shop, I determined to forge ahead and get to my class on time. Actually, I was way early. Once there I took out my cell phone and set a repair appointment.

Can you believe it? We now have to set appointments for cars as well as our selves, our families, and our pets. I guess that for all the damage that gas burning cars do to the environment, we still have a booming car business in here in the US. So much so that the car doctors are overbooked.

I went back to my campus, and then home when the day ended. After dutifully feeding Hyram and Hooboo, I headed over to drop the car at the dealership. I figured I'd need a rental. I had towing and rental reimbursement on my policy but when I tried to use it I found that it only happened when an accident had happened. Of course I found this out over at the car rental place. When my insurance didn't cover a rental I called Toyota back and they agreed to cover the cost of the rental for 1 day. This was very gracious of them. The car I was given to drive was a silver PT Cruiser. That is a pretty neat looking car but I'm not impressed with the ride. Still, it would get me to where I needed to be so I didn't complain...or at least not too much.

When the dealership called me at home a little later, after the diagnostics, they told me I needed my timing belt and the two drive belts replaced. That hadn't been what caused the light to come on. That problem was something to do with the internal funnel that you put the gas nozzle down into when you fill the car. It had come loose and was leaking gas even though I turned the gas cap past the clicking point every time. When they told me the bill I realized I might eventually need to change some of my planned expenditures. A three belt repair is pretty expensive.

Today after a full day at my campus I went to pick up my car. Wow! She feels peppy! When I step on the gas the acceleration is great! The a/c is wonderful. Everything seems to be in sync. She feels like a new car again. And the ride is wonderful. Even with the nasty bill I had to pay, I know that the car will now go another few years in pretty good shape. Now I guess I should probably go out and clean out the trash in the back seat to make the inside as nice as what's under the hood.

I've got a new movie in from Netflix. It's "The Last King of Scotland." I'm not sure if this is a good movie or a bad one but the trailer I watched caught my attention. I think I remember hearing a good recommendation from a friend too. So that's on the watch list for this weekend.

Most of my school work for tomorrow is done. I have the lesson material for the next set of lessons copied so I can conceivably get a head start on them. I talked to my CT and we decided to go with the lessons as I have them but expect to possibly split one of them up as the schedule she is usually on is about a day behind right now. Well, heck, I can be flexible. I think she is worried because at the speed we teach at there is almost no time to make up something if you skip a day.

I'm also thinking that I may have found the best way of handling my exhaustion for this school work. Or at least until I get through this semester. The past couple of nights I've gone to sleep early. I don't usually sleep till the news is on. Lately, however, I've been so exhausted I fell right asleep the minute I put my head down. Last night that was 7:40. No, I didn't get any homework done last night. This morning however, I woke up at about 3:00 and an hour and a half later I was awake enough to do some decent and efficient homework. I got both lesson plans written and started catching up on one of the surveys. This is what I used to do during the summers when I was going to school and not working. I even have a nice productive play list set up to help me get in the rhythm. So maybe the secret to surviving this semester is to sleep early which takes care of my mental and physical challenges and then get up early refreshed with a couple of hours of time to kill before I need to be anywhere. I think I'll give it a try.


San said...

I hate car trouble. It's good you didn't procrastinate on taking care of it.

Me, I need those solid nights of sleep. They really are restorative, on all the levels. And having extra time in the morning feels so good.

Lee said...

Thanks San. I'm glad I didn't wait too. Sadly, the repairs didn't solve all the problems. I have an ongoing "check engine" light problem. They fixed one problem, then it came back on again. They fixed a new problem. Then it came on again. So, I'll be sitting on the sofa in the waiting room this Saturday.

This is fun. I like having someone else to add comments to my blog. Thank you!

Joy! & Hope!