As I write this, it is the last night of my staycation. You may (or you may not) be wondering why I didn’t post more, since I had all that free time on my staycation. Let me give you a rundown of last weekend:
- Memorial Day Weekend, Saturday morning. Head to Orlando for my niece Katie’s graduation party. (Congratulations, Katie!) We’ve decided to make it a day trip, so we don’t pack.
- Saturday noon. Get to Palm Coast and swing by McDonald’s. Engine poofs and dies. Won’t start. Hubby strong-arms van into parking space. I fire up the iPhone and ask Siri for a towing company. I call them.
- Saturday afternoon. Still waiting. Siri fail. We make repeated trips into the McDonalds for what has become an epic pig-out. After third call to towing company in three hours, I call Tire Kingdom and ask them to recommend a towing company. Roger’s Towing recommended; I summon them instead. Of course, the first tow truck finally shows up immediately afterward. Annoyed husband sends it away. Roger’s Towing arrives seven minutes later. We pack in and head to Tire Kingdom.
- Saturday evening. Tire Kingdom reports that major repairs are necessary. Manager kindly offers us a ride to hotel in his personal van. Once we arrive, we thank him and foolishly send him away. Hotel has no room. Trudge to nearby hotel, a Microtel. It has no room either. Panicked, I ask the desk lady for help. She kindly calls a Day’s inn and procures their last room. She also calls us a taxi, because it is about two miles away.
- Saturday Night. We take the taxi to the Day’s Inn and spend the night on their surprisingly comfortable beds. However, we were totally unprepared for an overnight trip. We have nothing, except I brought some underthings and a shirt for my daughter because she is wearing a swimsuit. There is nothing in walking distance except a Home Depot. We beg some toiletries from the hotel front desk, and Chuck walks to the Home Depot and buys an iPhone charger, because he knows we’ll want one tomorrow.
Oh boy this is getting long.
Throughout all this, I was live-texting our progress to my family, who partied on. I asked for pictures posted to Facebook, and wished I could have one of those pudding shots (a syringe filled with pudding and spiked with vodka) even though I hardly ever drink.
You don’t think it was so bad? Read on:
- Sunday Morning. I convince my husband that we are quite capable of walking the half-mile to Tire Kingdom; and I point out that they even have sidewalks the whole way. However, before we leave we take every minute that we are allowed to stay in the hotel, and we check out at 11:00 sharp.
- Sunday Noon: We eat a mediocre lunch at Perkins and walk the last 100 feet to Tire Kingdom. And we commence to wait.
- Sunday Afternoon. Still waiting. A repair estimated to take 3.5 hours takes all day. Did I mention that my daughter is an angel throughout this entire ordeal? She gets to eat all the junk she wants. I debate cancelling my staycation. After all, this was supposed to be a time to destress, and it was anything but. I decide that if this drags out another day, I will report to work Tuesday morning and reschedule my staycation for July.
- Sunday Evening. My brother calls. It was his birthday and he didn’t see his text messages till now. He asks me why the #$@! I didn’t ask him to come get us. I explain that we’d have to come back out the next day anyway, and my king cab mini-pickup does not have room for daughter in the back seat. She overhears me and chimes in that she can squeeze in the back. I give her a hug, and promise bro that I’ll get a status and call him back.
- Sunday Night. Tire Kingdom is now closed, but three mechanics are gamely working on, determined to finish. One guy tells me that they have all experienced what it is like to be stranded. I am touched. I call bro and tell him that he’s off the hook. They finish at 9:45 and the mechanic drives it around back to rinse everything off. We leave at 10:00, and arrive home an hour later.
I am aware that this could have been a lot worse. But if you ever think, “dang; this kind of stuff only happens to me” you can think of my Memorial Day Weekend and console yourself with the company of my misery.
Winners: Tire Kingdom, Roger’s Towing, Microtel Hotel, McDonalds for the excellent tree under which we parked for three hours, and Home Depot, for carrying an iPhone charger (who knew?), and my daughter 🙂
Losers: John’s Towing, Siri, Perkins, and Dodge, for putting the timing belt in the center of the engine, making it necessary to disassemble the entire engine, resulting in depressing piles of parts around the van.
Shall I go into the rest of the week, with the physical therapy sessions, the repair on my pickup, the two-day trip to my sister’s to help her deal with a medical emergency, and the drive home with my mom’s vomity dog, which we will be petsitting indefinitely?
(The dog’s adorable–and was just carsick.)
Maybe in another post. Or maybe not.