Sunday, September 23, 2007

The Great Carcapade

I mentioned telling the story of the car breaking down during my last post. Thing is, it wasn't only MY car. On Mondays Michelle isn't due to class until noon, requiring us out door by 11:30. I consider it one of my easier days. We'd made a note to leave a bit early so we could run an errand, so leaving at 11:20. The phone rang about 10:45 and it was Drew, he was on his way to an 11:00 interview and he ran out of gas. I told him I'd stop by with some gas (it was on the way to the college) but he'd have to wait. He changed his interview time to 1 and waited for me. I changed our departure time to 11:10.

Thinking things through in my head I realized...I have a few extra kids home sick with a bad cold and sore throat. Including one who had a 1:45 dr appt. This means I have to drive the van instead of the Prism. So now I have to leave EARLIER (11:00) because the van's on E and I have to switch car seats over. (found out later...the gas can was empty and I'd have had to stop at the gas station anyways.) Michelle wasn't too happy since she wasn't ready. We managed to get out the door, get to the gas station, do our errand and rescue Drew. Silly me offered to pour the gas for Drew because he was in his dress clothes. Then I realized we were pressed for time and I had to GO! Here he's a grown man and I'm feeling like a sap for leaving him stranded on the side of the road (won't know he's not stranded until the car starts). I really am pathetic.

As I'm attempting to pull away from Drew my cell phone rings, it's Pat. Moooooom, I lost the key to the Toyota. WHAT!?!? How do you do that? Seems he is at the campus, went to leave for work (due there at noon) and can't find his keys. He searched the Toyota, his classroom, the hallways he walked and Jess's car...nothing. I inform him I'll be at the campus in about 20mins, so he'll have to wait.

I get there around noon, drop off Michelle for her class and find Pat in the parking lot searching the Toyota. He asks me to drive him to a deli so he can search the parking lot and where they sat for lunch. (traveled there in Jess's car) We go and he has no luck. He'd called into work and told them he'd be late. I decide I'll take him to work, head back to do a search for the keys. If they're still lost we'll probably have to call a locksmith to come out and make us a new set. Drew and I keep touching base on our cells while figuring out what to do. I'm also keeping Tom up to speed on the situation. What did we do before cell phones?

Driving back to campus I realize I'd just passed a Toyota dealership. So after searching around the car and campus with no luck I head over to the dealership. They direct me to the parts department and the manager tries to find me the right key. As is my luck it's not a clear cut case of which key I need and it takes a loong time. Meanwhile I have Carrie in the parking lot watching Olivia, Danielle and Sean in the van (Sean is being good and sleeping like I mentioned in my last post). The parts guy asks me to drive up to the car and test the blank key he thinks I need. If it fits in the ignition then he's cut it so it'll start the car for me.

I drive back to the car, get out and smell something....uhoh...it's burning rubber. The van brakes are starting to act up again? I decide to deal with the Toyota first and ignore the brakes. Unfortunately the blank is too fat to fit in the ignition switch...it's the wrong one. I head back to the dealer and the parts department. I can smell the brakes even more. He takes forever again (and Sean is still sleeping!) and hands me another key to try. Repeat the above scenario again, including the smellier brakes and key that won't fit into the ignition. Back to the dealer. Wait, wait, wait. (Sean's stillll sleeping...see what I meant?) This time he hands me a key he's cut, this should work, it's a temporary ignition key to use until the keys we're ordering get here. So I head back to campus for what I hope is the LAST time!

The key doesn't work. I don't have time to deal with the key anymore because Carrie's due at the dr's in 10mins. I call Tom and let him know that my brakes are really really stinky now and I'm not sure I'm going to make it home. Then we head to the dr's. I barely pulled out of the campus parking lot when I realize the van is pulling REALLY hard to the right and is too unsafe to drive. So I do a U-turn and head back to where Pat is parked. I get out and look, my brakes are now smoking.

I call the dr's and inform them we won't make the 1:45 appt. They give me an appt for 2:15. If I don't make that one they'll leave me on the schedule for a nurse's visit to get a throat culture. I need to at least get Carrie a throat culture. Michelle had seen us drive by, calls to see what's up and comes visit us in the van during her lunch. Tom calls to let me know he's leaving work, going home and getting the Prism and switching cars with me. Drew calls, he's done with his interview. I BEG him to come pick up Carrie and take her to her dr appt...he says ok. One problem solved! Michelle heads back to class and we head out to take a stroll on the nature trail and sit under the trees to wait for Tom.

As Drew is pulling into the parking lot to pick up Carrie, Jess is pulling out. She decides to turn around and come say Hi to Drew and pulls up next to him. While talking we wondered if the key was in her car. She said Pat searched it earlier and didn't find it. Drew opens the passenger door and starts searching in the seat anyways. I wonder aloud if maybe it was between the seat and the seatbelt. Jess pulls the seat cushion away from the center hump of the car and looks down. TADAAAAA! She found the key! Second problem solved!

Drew and Carrie finish up with her appt and stop by Wendy's to get us some lunch (we're STARVING!). Midway through our lunch Tom pulls up with the Prism (had lunch for him too). He's happy to hear the key's been found. Now we need to get the car to Pat so no one will have to pick him up after work. It's decided that Tom will drive the Toyota to the mall with Drew following him. They'll then come back and get the van, problem is it's 3:35 and Drew needs to be somewhere at 4. They'll be cutting it really close. I in the meantime buckle in car seats, load in the kids, pick up Michelle and drop her off at work (since we're heading that way anyways lol) head to the pharmacy to pick up prescriptions, then head home. Tom and I pull into the driveway within minutes of each other.

So much for one of my easier days. So much for parenting being easier once they grow up and become adults. I'd take a fight for a Barbie and a skinned knee over that day ANYDAY!

1 comment:

Kathy said...

Wow, what a day!!! Not much more I can say about that...lol