Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Amarillo by I Don't Know When

So yesterday I was all set to have a hitch and wiring installed on my car. That way, later this week I can pick up a rental trailer, drive to my office, load up my books and then try to get a good night's sleep before leaving Connecticut the next morning.

My appointment at U-Haul was at 8:00 a.m., Monday, January 2nd. Two guys were there, looking mostly-ready to work.

20 minutes after my car went into the service bay, one of the guys came out and said, "You're gonna have to come look at this." So I followed him through the door that says, "Employees Only." There, with us standing behind my car, it was explained to me that the bolts that have to come out before the hitch goes on weren't coming out. I'd have to take the car somewhere else to have the bolts taken out. Then, I could come back for "Install the Hitch, Part Deux."

So I called the nearest Ford/Mercurcy dealership (within spittin distance), finally got through to the Service Department, explained my unusual predicament, only to be told "Three of our mechanics are out sick this morning. Can't get you in. Sorry."

I really didn't have time for the nonsense, but wanted to ask, "And what sort of sickness do they have on Monday morning, January the second? Or does that sound too much like I think they all have the same thing?"

Click. Next call was to Dillon Ford. I got through to Service, explained the situation. The guy said, "Bring it over." So I brought it over. At the service desk, I began explaining my sad story again. The guy stopped me and pointed. I mean he pointed, like we were both supposed to stop, turn towards Mecca, hit our knees and pray.

Turned out, the guy was pointing towards the Dillon body shop, as in, "That's where you can get the problem solved." So I drove the car over to the body shop. (By this point, there's a part of my mind that was thinking, "You're never going to make it."). Once again, I explained the whole thing quite well; I was getting really good at it by that point. The guy, who looked like he knew what he was doing, just nodded.

Within about 10 minutes, the bolts were out. The guy said, "Gimme ten bucks." Of course, wanting to account for all my moving expenses, I took out my debit card. The guy who'd just saved me was mildly irritated. "No, I mean ten BUCKS." Oh, thought I, this guy wants buck skins. Bills. Moolah.

But did I have it? Just about the time I was getting good in a near-cashless system, here was a guy who wanted 10 dollars cash! To my relief, I discoverd that I had it. Whew!

Back in the car, I noticed that I should have, by that time, been done with all of this. Instead, I was going to get the hitch and wiring installed. And it happened. But not without an adventure.

Anyway, a few days back someone asked if I was still packing. Yep.


Steve Duer said...

Journeys like that are about patience. I am on one with our Gas Heat Pump. We have been waiting for 3 weeks now for parts to come in. My patience has been lost and found several times. I would love a $10 solution. Hopefully it will be resolved tomorrow.

Leland & Jackie said...

If all of your books will fit into a trailer that can be towed by a car (that is, assuming that you don't have a Dodge Ram Hemi Super Whatever 12-cylinder diesel) then, you must have sent many to the used book store. Good luck. I know that my library would fit in a trailer but I don't think the tires could take the weight.

Send us an email when you get to Armadillo. We have friends there and their daughter works at the college.

Dee O'Neil Andrews said...

Gee, Frank -

I thought you were probably well on your way to Amarillo already, and here you are just hanging out around chop shops and such fiddlin' around with your vehicle.

In that case - you obviously still have your computer up and operating, at least momentarily - you still have time to enter my brand new contest I started just yesterday (which will last a couple of weeks) for which I'm seeking entries for my "Winter Desktop" Picture Contest.

The rules are spelled out in my blog post of yesterday. And, by the way, your buddy Steve Duer has already submitted his (first?) entry, which is quite good. Even for a guy with a broken bone in his hand. Well - of course, he took the picture about 5 years ago, he said, and it includes lots of snow and trees and two cute little kids.

I'll let you get back to packing now.

Steve Duer said...

Hope the move is going well. Have missed hearing from you.

Alden said...


Just thought I'd touch base and see how things were. I'm settled in Nashville now, and working on my first year of Div school at Vanderbilt. So far it's been wonderful. I've also enjoyed a close association with some faculty members from Lipscomb. It looks like I may be headed in the direction of teaching like yourself; we'll see if anyone will hire me when the time comes. Anyway, I pray your move is successful and that all goes well in this next chapter of your life. As you know, you've been a major influence in my own spiritual development, and I appreciate it.

Steve Duer said...

Hey Frank, you alive?????

If you are, I just tagged you. Check out my blog for your assignment.

Hope all is well.

Dee O'Neil Andrews said...

Hope you're doing okay, Frank. I've corresponded with your sister, Shari, a lot since we found each other and that she knows my daughter and family in Wellington.

I don't know if you'll get this note, even, but hope so. We're missing you and hoping all is going well.