My life on Mondays….my life on Mondays……where to begin. Let’s start with a little story. On Wednesday, my friend and I decided to drive up to Park City, Utah for the day to visit all the trendy art galleries, cool boutiques and yummy restaurants. There was only one problem, his car wouldn’t start. He was really frusturated because he’s just shelled out $400 dollars to fix it. I offered to drive my car and half way up the canyon, my car started making a very funny noise. I laughed it off…my car is pretty old and, well…it’s not the quietest vehicle.
Heading home, the noise intensified. Every time I slowed down, every time I sped up, when I turned right, when I turned left….pretty much all the time, except if I was driving in a straight line. Coming out of the canyon, I knew I had a problem on my hands. *The wheels on the car go ca-clunk…ca-clunk…ca-clunk*. As I dropped him off at the campus library, people were staring at my car. And it wasn’t _”Hmmm…I wonder if her car is okay”_ stares, it was the way you stare at someone who’s El Camino just backfired loudly in the parking lot of 7/11. I decided not to risk driving the hour home on the freeway to my house late at night. I stayed in town and took it to a mechanic in the morning. Apparently, there was nothing holding my right front tire on. The wheel barring was broken. That’s about $250. It was rubbing up against the hub, which explains the ca-clunking. That was another $100. And the hub was rubbing up against the brakes, that would be….I didn’t even want to think about it. _”Fix what you have to.”_ I told him. Then I went back to my friends house and took a nap.
*The damage came to $400*, ironic since it was the same mechanic who “fixed” my friend’s car. Also ironic since that’s about the sum of the purchases made on my Banana Republic credit card. _This could be a problem._ Seeing that I was visibly upset, the mechanic commented on how he hated his job. _”I’m in the bad-news business.”_ Serves me right for having an old car. When I lived in London, I didn’t have to worry about a car. I used public transportation to get everywhere I needed to go…..and public transportation took me everywhere I needed to go. Everything else was within walking distance. Yes, big-city living appeals to me because of this. No need for vehicle insurance payments, rising gasoline prices, unexpected breakdowns and expenses, not to mention the price of the car itself. And then take into consideration the likelihood of dying in a car accident…..but counter that with the increasing number of public transportation terrorist attacks.
And even though I can’t think of a worse time to have car problems in my life right now…I don’t think that there is every really a good, or even, okay time to have your car break down. It’s just one of those things I have to accept. I’ve exhausted myself arranging for rides, borrowing cars, paying bills, returning clothes, trying not to miss a work shift. And all the while, thinking that somehow…all of this anxiety could be avoided. Yes….I probably could have stopped driving the car sooner once it started ca-clunking….but I can’t kick myself for that. If anything, I should be kicking myself for too many charges to Banana Republic. For ever leaving London. And for believing for just one second that being out on your own in the real world could be relatively hassle-free.