Thursday, March 20, 2014

100 Books: Somewhere in Time

Subtitle: *Somewhere in Time-ing Belt*

I promise, promise, triple promise I will write up books #30 and #31 before grading anything else or reading book #32. 

But first I have to tell you about how the universe is an amazing happy place full of generosity and miracles and good karma. I told all my classes this story but it's so important I need to share it with you so just shhhh about reading book reviews and listen to my story.

Here we go.

Maybe someday I will want to take care of my car, but really I think it should take care of itself and it usually generally does, and it takes care of me so I *do* take care of its oil etc. With almost 100,000 miles under its perfectly perfect belt, I've been told repeatedly and enthusiastically to get the timing belt changed because if it breaks the damage will be  thousands and thousands of dollars.

Ok. Ok. I get it. I know, I'm an adult I need to be responsible but I just don't like to spend hundreds of dollars AND hours of my time on something that isn't actually broken, I'm crazy wild like that. 

Just as my car reaches our 5 year mark together I get myself to do the right thing and book a timing belt change appointment online through the car website.

 Awesome. Easy. Convenient.

 Minutes later I get an email with a name of my contact person.  Hooray!

The morning I take the car I drop it off with no wait and then a chauffeur takes me to work.  

She gives me her card and tells me to call and schedule a pickup later. Easy peasy.  Hooray #2. 

Way early in the morning I'm at my office getting all sorts of great stuff done. I want to review Book #30 but I have a ton of online papers from February and webclass exams from 2 weeks ago that I just have to grade. Once I start grading it's easy to keep going.One student writes that the government of colonial Virginia was a low lying peninsula. That blooper makes me giggle and keeps me grading and once I'm rolling the process goes faster than I'd expected because half the students skipped all the essay questions. 

Before leaving my office to head out to my afternoon class I give the car dealership a call and check on the status of my car.

It's ready.  Perfect. They'll send the driver at 2:30. Perfect. If I'm going to pay $400 for a service to fix something that isn't broken this isn't as horrible an experience as it could be. Hooray #3

The driver picks me up just where and when she'd promised and ten minutes later she has me back at the dealership. We say our goodbyes and she tells me to go through this door to turn there to pay my invoice. 

I find the window, give my name, see my keys. The nice lady looks at the print out. Her face is extra serious. 

I hate this I hate this I hate this, I think and then try NOT to think while holding my pen over a blank check.

After an awkward silence during which I admired the mugs on display, nice lady behind the desk finally annoucned,"Your balance today is.... nothing."

I straight up grabbed her arm across the desk (in a thankful way) and asked her to repeat herself.

Nothing Ma'am. Everything is covered, you're great.

I sign something, grab my keys and raced out. I just knew to  get GONE already before someone at the dealership changed their mind and said wait, wait, wait, that's the wrong invoice, the new guy messed it all up. 

Waves of light and gratitude roll over me and I just KNOW the world is a WONDERFUL PLACE and also God Bless America and this dealership even if it sells foreign cars.   I look up at the sky and say thank you thank you thank you, letting a big whooosh of bubbly happy good karma come into my life.

 Not spending that chunk of change is HUGE and I want to scream it out to the world but then again I want to keep it a secret.

Stopped at the intersection before the one that's next to the Taco Bell that lives in the Walmart parking lot I look down at my paperwork to see what I signed. This service MUST  have been part of the 100,000 miles, 10 years warranty, I just know it, but I need to SEE it in writing.

On the first line it says something like "Reason for visit to the car doctor? Change timing belt"

The second line says something like "Vehicle does not HAVE timing belt; this engine -vehicle has timing chain. No work done."

Hooray #4