So we decided this year to not renew our AAA membership.
Lucky for us, we still had a month left on it. Yesterday morning, myself filled to the backteeth with buckets of wonderful, life-giving coffee, we set out to go to church, getting out a bit earlier than usual. We were rather pleased with ourselves to be quite on-time.
We don't get too far, but as we turn right onto Blue Parkway we realize we've a flat. Naturally we turn in at the nearest opportunity, which happens to be a dingy motel that could win first prize in a "Best in Seediness" contest. We briefly consider just calling AAA and having them come out and do it, but I decide to give it a try. I get the jack and the tire iron and set to work.
After a veritable eternity trying to jack the car up (the tire iron was supposed to be used as a handle somehow, and I'm relatively certain that I was doing it the wrong way), I set to work on the removing the bolts. To my chagrin, I discovered that they were installed by burlier-than-average silverback gorillas with pneumatic wrenches and gobs of red Loctite. I'm sure the cold can't have helped, either. Finally admitted defeat and we called AAA.
After a half hour or so the cavalry arrived, and out came the professional equipment...a lever-based jack that raised the car in seconds and a high-torque electric wrench. Made all kinds of noise, so we stood around cringing with apologetic and embarrassed expressions, as it probably woke up all the prostitutes, Johns, and people from out of town that made the mistake of booking online, where I'm sure the pictures made it look quaint and homey. Even the wrench couldn't budge some of the bolts, but with the help of a giant cross-shaped tire iron he got it going. Then out came the spare tire, which we were horrified to see was almost flat itself (yes, the shame...what can I say, it looked fine when no weight was on it) (yes I know I need a tire gauge), but of course the guy had an air compressor (wakey wakey everyone!) so that was a non-issue.
Moral of the story, our road readiness was vastly sub-par, and thank God that we got a nice little "checkup" on that note before our AAA membership ran out. While Walmart was repairing our tire yesterday, we went ahead and got some automotive essentials, including a better cross-shaped wrench.
Perhaps in a subconscious effort to regain my Man Card after standing around like a tottering fool while Mister Roadside Assistance changes my tire, I managed to complete a couple home improvement projects...fixing the wiring in our bathroom finally, and installing a small bolt on our basement door. Not that it would stop a determined intruder, but it would require a bit of noise to get through; every little bit of extra warning is good for stuff like that.
I forgot to mention, it was SODDING COLD outside yesterday. But we had a sunny disposish about the whole affair, as epitomized by the following song:
"A spot of philosophy!"