Some things in life you can’t predict, while other things you know are going to happen. Then there those things that you know will happen, but you can’t predict when it will happen. Today the stars aligned in the not-so-good way. After talking with you friends about it, perhaps even joking about it, this afternoon was when my old car decided to die. After what felt like an okay day, filled with events attended, on the way home I knew something was off. But first let’s talk about the day itself.
So I park in a garage that is about 12 minutes walking from my office. I scoot, as y’all know, to save some time. Today when I got out of my, at the time, living car I heard sirens in the distant. As I walked out of the garage, I saw construction workers running across the street to my side and congregating there. I also saw one police car and one fire truck there next to the building I walk by. I see everyone there standing and the vehicles, and have a general idea where the siren is coming from, yet what do I do?I scooted right next to the building that potentially had a fire. No one said anything to me as I gained speed on my scooter. As I went past, I swear I saw a little wisp of smoke coming out of one area. Foreshadowing the smoke that would be coming out of my own car later in the day.
The first thing I attended was another meeting where I previously ran into the other people who interviewed me twice, but I was unsuccessful getting the job both times. There was no awkwardness, rather it nothing at all happened. I’m not even sure they saw me this time, as I got a seat in the back since I hated sitting at the very front last time. The next event was around lunch time, where a coworker invited me to attend a hispanic staff lunch meeting. I brought my other coworker buddy along, in hopes that we can get to better know our coworkers. We’ve talked about it before, but at times we still feel like we’re on the outside trying to fit in with some of them. It’s a process, no doubt. We ended up sitting behind them, so no talking occurred. Pizza arrived late, and I had a cookie to go with 2 slices. The guilt still dwells in me. But after the meeting, spoke with someone who’s a part of a party committee I thought about joining. I gave her my card, and she emailed asking if I wanted to be co-chair of that committee. That escalated quickly! But I think I’ll go for it, since I do want to be more involved here.
I couldn’t even exercise today, because it’s been a long day. But we’re getting to that part. At the end of that meeting, my friend wanted to leave early in case appointments came in early. I said wait a moment, because they’re about to do the raffle. Guess what? As he was getting up to leave, they pulled his ticket number to win a prize! I could not believe it! Mostly cause I wanted to win and, my luck, the guy who wanted to leave wins instead. But I joked about it the rest of the day. The other thing I wanted to talk about was the hispanic event itself, and how it ties into my own identity; or lack thereof at times. But I’ll post about that food-for-thought topic later, because I’m honestly tired from today but I want to type this now before I lose some details if I tried writing it tomorrow. So the rest of the day at work was ho-hum but good. Walked to my car, no fires, no problems. Go to my still-alive car, and turned the key and then the last ride began.
The moment I turned it on, I knew something was different. The way it sounded, it just wasn’t right. I drive a SUV, yet it sounded like I was driving an 18-wheeler or a diesel truck. Some of you might know that certain engine cackling noise I’m talking about. Halfway through my drive was alright, but then came the random dog. In front of me, was a car who stopped instantly as a dog ran across the street. That part I wasn’t upset about, as I’m glad the dog was not hurt; though it tried to run across again at which point I was like “really dog?!”. Yet as I slammed on my brakes, and then accelerated again I noticed something was wrong. In my mind, I feel something under the car came loose, but maybe it was under the hood. Not sure, but I noticed the temperature gauge was instantly off. It was all the way to right indicating overheating. My initial idea of getting gas was thrown out the window; knowing I needed to try and get home asap. Then all of a sudden as I approached one stoplight, I saw that gauge shoot straight from far right all the way to far left.
I knew instantly that the chances of me getting home just went dim, and that at any moment the car would probably give out on me. The worst part. . . was that I had not even approached the long, curvy, hilly road it takes to get home. Now I could’ve taken a path less curvy to save some risk, but that would be out of the way and to get home requires climbing one big incline road. So I took a gamble, and ventured forward. Winding left and right along the scenic yet dangerous curves at speeds that are not slow to say the least. I dared not brake instantly, or accelerate too fast, and fasten the odds of death. By some miracle, I survived the most curvy part of the drive. As I approached another stoplight, I saw in my mirror the car was spitting out black smoke. I knew it was about to happen. As I crossed under the freeway, and was on flat road, that’s when it happened. I felt the car no longer wanted to accelerate, and was steadily dropping.
I’ve been through it before, and knew I had to pull off immediately. So I got on the side of the road, and it happened. It stopped and died about 3 miles from the apartment. So close, yet so far. Had it died anywhere on the road, major traffic would’ve occurred or even a possible accident with an unexpected car death. Frustrating at first it was for me, but as I sat there waiting for help I kind of was in high spirits. I’ve been through so much with that car, good and bad, that if that was how it went then I’m glad I was there (and safe) to see it go. And texting my boss about it, she even offered to come help take me home. That meant a lot to me, considering I’ve only worked there for a month and she was willing to help rather than saying that’s too bad. Sleepiness is kicking in, so I’ll wrap up by saying the tow truck came about an hour later. The guy was friendly and nice, so no complaints. My parents had to drive and bring the truck for me to use for the time being. I feel so bad though, because they had dinner plans and I ruined it for them. I’ll have to make it up somehow to them. They may try and see if the car can be repaired, but at this point I think it’s finished and only confirmed what I’ve been saying in that it’s time for a new car. A long, eventful day no over. I’m glad I’m okay, and now I’m just hoping I don’t wake up in the middle of the night again. . .