What a Pain in the Tuchus!: #Sol15 2/31

So last Wednesday around 2:00 PM,  I was minding my own business and driving back to Paramus on the NYS Thruway.  Sun shining, music playing on my car radio and I consider rolling down the window for some fresh air BUT, just after moving into the right lane, just before moving off the Thruway and onto the Garden State Parkway, I spot a long yellow wooden strip in front of me and try to slow down, but there was no way to avoid the hit and BAM!!!!

Front tires blow and somehow I am able to drive off the road onto the spacious shoulder.  I feel fine but in shock.  I don’t want to call Tuvia right away and soon I realize that I’m alone.  A car in front of the me and there’s one behind.  Both suffering from the same block of wood.  A young girl from the car behind walks over to me with tears streaming down her face.  She was on her phone and shaking.  I can’t really help because I am wondering what I should do first.

Instantly, a Thruway crew arrives and removes  the block of…. metal, not wood the guys report to each of us.  A block of metal, painted yellow, dropped off a truck.  They seem casual about it, like it’s a regular occurrence.  Of course they were pleased to see that we were all okay, and they had already called the police.

I feel free now to report this to my insurance company, envisioning a mess underneath the car but when the police finally  arrive and the tow truck appears to help us, their experienced eyes, assure us that our cars will probably  just need new tires and I start breathing freely again and I’m ready now to call Tuvia.

Hey, just get me to a tire place and I’m home free right?  NO!

SEARs is closest.  Sears, of course.  Reliable right?

The tow truck guy remembers me from my teaching days at Pearl River.  His sister loved my class and he takes extra care to make sure I understand all the details and makes sure there’s  someone to take care of me.  Sweet, but everything moves very slowly.

It took forever for the cop to arrive, for the “guys” to discuss the situation, the tow trucker to change tires for the teary young girl and to get our cars on his truck.

But now I am home free… Eugene is my Sears guy.  I explain the accident to him and he recommends tires.  I am sure this will be a walk in the park and not enough cost to even involve GEICO.  Two tires and a tow.. nothing right?

Tuvia was now calling every 10 minutes for updates and I had nothing to share.  He wants to come and be with me.  I discourage him.  I could be back on the road in an hour or so… and it’s cold and it could be a challenge for him to find me.  But it’s  getting later in the day, I am growing more and more impatient and tired and it was taking longer to get started. An initial look at my tires and Eugene brings back news.  I need to replace a third tire and hey, when you need three new tires it makes sense to go for 4. Now we are getting closer to $1000.00.  But my deductible is $500. So still makes sense to pay this out of pocket.

The operation should take 1 1/2 hours. Just across the street is  the Nanuet Mall, filled with stores and restaurants and once my car was on its way to repair I’m out and Tuvia is already  on the road headed to me.

As much as I discouraged him from coming I can’t say I wasn’t thrilled to see him SUV turn into the mall entrance and as I flag him down and hop up into the warm car, the invitation of a glass of wine at the mall’s Bone Fish makes the long crazy day fade just a bit.

We park, fight the winds to Bone Fish and finally,   sitting with drinks and appetizers I am almost happy, until  I notice a missed call on my phone.

Trouble ahead!  Two rims and their sensors need to be replaced! need to be replacedwere bent beyond recognition and rims need sensors.  We finished enjoying Bone Fish and returned to reality.  I had an estimate now for $2500 and the number of my insurance agent, Tom and plans to get a rental car from Enterprise the next morning. Tom is great.  Even though Sears is totally uncooperative, he is able to see my car in their parking lot and approve the work.

Fast Forward to Saturday morning:  Rims and sensors are waiting for me at my Mazda dealer.  Yes, I’m picking them up to bring them to the Sears just to move the process along.  I have a rental car I want to get rid of asap.  Tuvia is ready to come and along and this time I assure him this will be a piece of cake.

Everything is moving smoothly.  I begin at the gym with my trainer, prepping for my Climb up 66 floors for the next morning for MS, I pick up the rims and head to Sears.  I drop off the car to Eugene and while I’m ready to return the rental I get a sign from Eugene to wait on the return.  What?  Maybe there could be something we haven’t planned for. WHAT????

Okay.  I head over to Starbucks at the mall with my Kindle to read more of The Swimmer. 

Time passes.  Tuvia calls a few times for updates.  I have nothing.  Finally 3 hours later Eugene has news.  Another rim is cracked. WHAT???

I return to Sears and I am livid and without any trace of control.  I unleash in the garage and I want out.  I take the rental back, they put the spare on as the 4th tire and my back seat is covered with old rims and a new tire and I head for home in my sad car,crying to be well.

Fast Forward. It’s Monday morning and there is an end near.  Mazda will take care of the rest of the work, my adjustor Tom will meet up with me when the work is done and write me a check for this last chapter.

So here’s my thoughts:  It was not a slam dunk to replace a few tires.  Sears, a powerhouse company once, is in decline. I love GEICO.  Patience lasts just so long and soon, I hope I will have my car humming again.

I think she deserves a good wash and shine, don’t you?

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25 thoughts

    • Terje, that’s a perfect way to describe this whole experience- scary and then mostly annoying to get back to normal. Tomorrow and then Wednesday could do it!

  1. How scary.Last summer, I ran over a blown tire I couldn’t avoid without smashing into another car. My tires were fine but it knocked a panel loose beneath the car. A nice man helped me fix it at a nearby rest stop. All I had was a paperclip but he MacGyvered it so it held. I got home & called the insurance folks and they sent me to a place to get it fixed. It was under my deductible, but I was glad to have it fixed.

  2. That’s some story! (BTW: You had me at tuchus. When I saw that on Twitter I clicked right away. Thanks for the Yiddishinspiration!)

    Yes, get that car a nice wash and shine! It’s well-deserved.

  3. Oh my, Bonnie. Glad you are OK. What an ordeal and a hassle. I don’t Sears is what they once were. We lost ours at our local mall. I think you need to get away for a few days and totally enjoy yourself. Did I read that you have a trip coming up soon?

  4. OMG! Who knew what was in store for you! That is quite the ordeal and shame on the person who didn’t keep better track of the items he was hauling. I think the car does deserve some loving care, but you definitely deserve a bottle of wine. Enjoy!

  5. That’s horrible! I am so glad you weren’t injured. Did they charge your deductible? Sometimes in a case like this where it was unavoidable and the fault of another driver, they call it an act of God and waive the deductible. I’m glad it all ended well.

  6. Glad you are OK, and that insurance will kick in! Once I was on I-295 South and a shovel flew out of the truck in front of me. I thought I was dead for sure. It bounced once, and then flew off to the side. Another time, I was on the Garden State Expressway heading to Ocean City, and a muffler fell off the Cadillac in front of us. That was scary. It was summer, and the there was a lot of traffic. Again, I was able to avoid the muffler. I felt bad for the lady who owned the Cadillac though. She was stuck in the middle of the expressway!

  7. Poor Bonnie, I’m sorry for your sweet baby car too. I felt the frustration and was proud of how you handled everything, but were so happy when Tuvia came to take you to Bonefish. Really, I am just glad that you were not hurt. I would have been that crying younger girl right away. Things happen so quickly. xo

  8. I love the title of your story…it piqued my interest right away! So sorry you had such an ordeal, but glad it all worked out in the end.

  9. The good news is that you are obviously an optimist. When all those things happen to you and, with every turn you think it’s going to be easy, you are an optimist with a capital O. That’s something to celebrate.

  10. Sorry you had to endure such an experience, glad you survived it without injury. Sad about Sears, isn’t it? Glad you drew the line when enough was enough! And your Mazda does deserve a top of the line car wash.

  11. Definitely a pain, but glad it was the metaphorical one, Bonnie. You are fortunate, & considering the weather, a wash might be welcome. I have a wonderful garage, sorry that Sears didn’t work out. They did used to be so, so good. I had great service once at a Big O Tires (I think.) It was an emergency & I needed a tire fixed fast. They were great.

  12. Holy cow! What a week! Not only does the car deserve a nice wash, I think you deserve several nice glasses of wine! Glad everything worked out ok!

  13. Pingback: Slice of Life #3: Driving | A little of this, a little of that

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