Thursday, November 13, 2008

Deja Vu

I had to ride to work today because of last night's car troubles, on flat tyres, so I went to the garage first to pump them up, and busted 4 kids wagging and having a smoke. Dumb dumb dumb and dumber!!!!

Half way through the afternoon The Heir rang:

Dad, my car's broken down on the way back from Margaret River.

I thought he was winding me up after last night's dramas, but he assured me he and Toni really were stuck.

What happened?

It made a rattling sort of noise, I thought it was the fan, then it stopped.

I don't know much about mechanics but I do know that rattling/knocking noises from the front of a car are generally very bad news!

Like a knocking noise?

Yeah sort of.

I think it's fatal mate!

The Blue Beast has been written off before on more than one occasion only to bounce back, but I really didn't like the sound of this.

Can you come and pick us up?

I'd like to but my car is not working either, remember!

OK, we'll try Noel.

Call me back if that doesn't work.

I didn't hear back so I guessed that Noel had gone to retrieve them. When I got home I discovered that in fact Mrs Holt Press had gone to their aid.

Meanwhile back in the office, the phone rings again.

Is that Marcus Holt?


This is Constable such and such from Busselton Police station. Did your car break down last night? Do you know where it is?

Yes it did and yes I do.

We've had a call from a lady reporting it, they want it moved off their verge. You've got until tomorrow.

OK, but that's a bit strange, I talked to them last night when we broke down and the lady said it was fine to leave it there.

I think you may have talked to a different person than the one who rang me, her daughter I think.

OK. I'm going round this afternoon to try and get it started.

Taking The Heir with me we went round to see if we could get it running. I knew the battery was flat so hoped we'd be able to jump start it. I checked the fuses under the dash, all intact.
Looked under the bonnet. Did minor repair on loose wire. Noticed another fuse box so I checked them, they were a range of sizes shapes and ampages but as far as I could tell all looked to be intact. Then I noticed a third fuse box! Checked it as well, no obvious signs of a problem. Then, while inspecting the battery cable found yet another fuse box!!! How many fuse boxes can one car have? This one had three more than any car I'd ever heard of! But, one of the fuses, a 30 amp number was blown. That looked like the problem however, I was wrong. Getting it out was the problem! It did not want to budge and we began to speculate on whether we'd broken it in half trying to remove it. It's hard to explain but in the end we couldn't extract it even though the two beside it came out quite easily.
Either way, the car wasn't going to start, we needed to tow it. The Yaris is not up to that sort of challenge so I rang Dave to ask if I could borrow his truck.
Before driving off I spoke to the lady in the house to let her know what we were doing and mentioned the call from the police.

That was my Mum! She thought it was stolen.

As I drove away I thought to myself, stolen! What car thief knocks on someone's door at 10.00 o'clock at night and asks permission to leave their "stolen" car on the front verge? Some people!

Back to Dave.

Sure, but you'll have to pick up the keys from me.

Where are you?

At dancing lessons.

Pause till laughter fades. OK, I'm on my way.

Dave met us in the carpark and seemed very eager that we not come in!

Into the truck and back to the stricken Toyota. We hooked up the car and proceeded carefully down the highway and delivered the car to the auto electrician. I'll ring him in the morning to let him know what's going on.

The Heir then came up with a bright idea.

Hey Dad, seeing as we've got the truck, can we go and get my car?

Yeah OK. How far is it?

Not far, it's just past the new school really. (At Vasse)

OK but we need to get fuel first, the truck's almost empty.

Deisel for the truck and Vanilla Diet Coke for us. Off we went to Vasse. As I suspected, it was almost 10km past the new school before we found the blue beast. Maths is not The Heir's strong suit but to be fair it wasn't mine either.

Getting it moving was a tougher challenge. The combined effect of the weight of the beast, the angle it was parked-nose into the drain beside the road- and the loose gravel meant I was spinning the wheels of the truck but making no progress. It required some manouvreing of both vehicles and four more attempts before we finally got mobile. I hadn't felt even the slightest tug while towing my car. Towing the beast felt like dragging a reluctant hippo out of a swamp.
But, with due care we got it home.

Then I had a bright idea.

Hey Son, while we've got the truck, how about we go and pick up the work bench I bought at the garage sale?

Do you know where it is now?



Nowhere near where I thought it was!!!!

Upon arrival I knocked on the door and Mac answered with a big grin, having heard about my exploits on Sunday. We set about loading the bench onto the truck. I think it's fair to say I have never lifted anything so heavy in my life!! The front is solid jarrah and weighs a ton. Not to mention how awkward it was, and how unbalanced, with all the weight in the front, my left side.
I was genuinely relieved when we got it on the tray, and genuinely worried how we were going to get it off at the other end!
Thankfully The Hair had had the foresight to invite Zac W to stay the night so we were able to employ their extra muscle to do the deed.

Both Heir and Hair commented, Mum's gonna love that! when we deposited it in the carport!
There have been many complaints about the mess in the carport, the boat and the patio of late, the accumulation of objects that should rightfully be in the shed, and would be but for the fact it still doesn't have a concrete floor! But that's another story.

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