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Sunday, October 18, 2009

A Life Less Dramatic

I want a life less dramatic. Until recently, I would listen to tales of drama from friends and co-workers and think, "I'm so glad my life is relatively drama free."

God decided my friends and co-workers had suffered enough and I needed to take on some of the excess.

A month ago today, my husband and I were driving home from a trip to Ikea (yay Ikea!) where we picked up a few small items we had been avoiding buying. Turns out it was a good thing that it was small items, because our car came to a total stop on the expressway. Blessedly, it was actually at the exit to his parent's house, and his dad is quite mechanically adept. So we called him, and he set out at 10 at night to come rescue us. And right after that, the mechanic who works two businesses down from my office happens by, and stops to see if we need help. (He didn't recognize us in the dark; he just stops to help people stuck at the side of the road.) He figured out what we needed to be able to coast to the in-law's house, so we put him on the phone with my father-in-law. He headed on, and by 11:30 we made it my in-laws house. They loaned us his dad's truck, and we headed home, getting back past midnight.

The next day, his mom's car breaks down at the side of the road. His dad has to go rescue her, and the car juggling gets complicated.

Fast forward to Monday. Did you hear about the Atlanta floods? Well, guess where my raincoat was? Yep, in our car. I finally made it to work, over an hour late instead of fifteen minutes early as I would have under normal conditions. Getting home was fun, too…I just love public transportation when I don't have a rain jacket and it's, well, raining.

The next weekend we have to switch vehicles with my in-laws, which wasn't a problem since we weren't going far and my father-in-law actually drove out here to make the switch.

Remember the problems with his mom's car? While we were getting set up for D&D, my husband ran out to pick up pizza. Half an hour later he wasn't back, and he calls. BECAUSE THE CAR KEPT BREAKING DOWN! So his dad is driving back out to pick him up, but he needs someone to come get the pizza from him before it's stone cold. HIs dad comes out, he gets it running, we switch vehicles, and my husband follows his dad back to their house, and then comes back to our house. Meanwhile my friends take me home.

Later that week, we find out the car is kaputt. (The guy couldn't get to it for a few days, because the road going to his lot was flooded.) The engine is shot, which is especially disappointing since we had it rebuilt about a year and a half ago. So now we're car-hunting, only two months after having to buy a house. Oh joy.

During this time we receive some disturbing health news, which I don't want to go into here. Just accept that it's more stress we don't need.

Since then we've had lots of drama with car shopping; a trip my husband and his dad took to Birmingham on their day off, only to find out it was seriously misrepresented in the ad and their phone conversation, getting lost trying to find sellers, cars that sell just as we're about to leave to go see them, and more.

While we're out of town for a conference, his mom's computer also goes kaputt (that's German, by the way). Fortunately, it can be repaired, but we spent a lot of time on our trip trying to provide tech support by phone, with no good results. We have to come back a little earlier than planned to try and fix it, but we're thankful we had a vehicle to even make the trip!

Also during this time my best friends' little girl was diagnosed with swine flu, and one of my nephews (the eight month old) had to go to the emergency room twice. The second time was yesterday…

Which we found out while waiting for a wrecker to come and get us after a guy in a Mustang ran a stop sign, resulting in my husband hitting him. Blessedly, my love was able to slam on the brakes and swerve, so he was going a bit slower and didn't hit the driver's side straight on. Everyone was fine, which is what counts, and amazingly enough there was an ambulance just driving down the road, so they were only four cars away when it happened.

Did I mention we were all the way in Ellijay, leaving the Georgia Apple Festival, two hours from home? And that we were in my father-in-law's truck, which had been the spare vehicle? We ended up on the side of the road for an hour, then the (very nice) police officer drove us to the towing company's lot. There we had arrange for someone who could tow us to Atlanta, which entailed lots of conversations by phone with my father-in-law. We finally found a local who could, and the officer drove us to the local shopping center (Starbucks, IHOP, and Wal-Mart) to wait for the towing guy to finish up what he was doing and pick up the truck. Finally, after 9:30, we make it back to my father-in-law's house, where we pay the driver (a very nice guy, a churchgoing family man) and get the car unloaded. Another of our nephews was there, so he had stayed up WAY past his bedtime to see us and the big wrecker truck. (He loved it, and we were thrilled to see him.)

By the time we got home, my back was killing me. It was already sore, but after an hour standing at the side of the road, and another hour alternately sitting in the back seat of a police car and standing around, then a ride in the cab of a wrecker? Not good. Not to mention the stress that left my back all knotted up.

So, spare car gone, and we're going to look at another one today; not how we planned to spend my love's birthday! I so pray this works out, because the last thing I need is another week or two of drama. And we didn't even get to stop and buy our apples…