Saturday, May 10, 2008

So much for preschool

Fate has decreed that Mayhem will not be attending preschool in the fall. Fate in the form of my 2001 PT Cruiser taking what is becoming, alarmingly, it's annual 2 week holiday.  Granted it does see a lot of driving. It has 127,000 miles on it. I'd want a rest every now & then too. But perhaps I'd take a shorter & cheaper one.  These little rest cures the car seems determined to have never cost less than $1000.  The transmission went out in July 2006, fortunately just as we reached my parents driveway and not 2 hours previously while going up Coopers Rock Mountain in a dead cell zone in the middle of nowhere West Virginia. But it took 7 days in the shop and $1200 to fix.  Add to that the cost of DH missing 3 days work. Thanks to my parents we did not need to rent a car.

Not quite a year later, in April 2007,  I hit a huge tree branch in the road, a couple days after a big storm did some serious damage to the area trees. I suspect it fell of the back of the truck that was collecting the debris. It was smack in my way and just on the other side of rise in the road, so I didn't see it until it was too late.  Bent the hell out of my frame and did some serious internal damage to the car engine parts. It cost over $2500 to repair and let me say THANK GOD for comprehensive insurance with rental car included! We only paid $500 for it, but then also paid for separate rental car insurance because it was still windstorm season, which came to another $500 by the time I got my car back.

This time the problem is the engine and gauges and things that have to be milled and things that are leaking in to other things and apparently I have no brakes and all the deferred "ought to be done" at this mileage maintenance has caught up with us and now "Must be done". $2000!!

Let me just say that the reason I have no specific idea what is wrong with my car is not because I am the stereotypical dumb woman who doesn't understand how engines work. It is because when my husband called me from the shop to tell me what the problem with my temperature gauge was (that's what we thought was wrong with the car, it was running a bit hot); he started the conversation with "It will cost $2000" and then proceeded to list the problems.  I naturally heard nothing after "$2000" because my mind was screaming "HOLY SHIT!!! $2000!!! WE DON'T HAVE $2000!!! WHERE ARE WE GOING TO GET $2000!!!" and totally drowned out what DH was saying. I heard "Mill this muffled muffled muffled timing belt muffled muffled muffled replaced muffled muffled muffled brakes worn to metal muffled muffled muffled leaking into engine" and then he said "It'll be in the shop 10 days" and my mind started screaming again "HOLY SHIT 10 FUCKING DAYS!!!??!!! WHAT I AM GOING TO DO FOR A CAR FOR 10 FUCKING DAYS!!???!!" while he said some more stuff.

So, the money that would have paid for Mayhem's preschool is now paying for the car, only we have to come up with at least some of it, 4 months sooner than we thought.

Right now I am wishing we'd held off on the washer & dryer. That $1800 rebate that hit our account right around the time DH was telling about how screwed we are on the car. It is too late to return the washer & dryer and even if we could, they have disposed of ours so we can't get them back.

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