Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Flat Out of Luck

So I hope it goes without saying that only the most extenuating of circumstances would justify my lack of posts over the past few days -- especially considering how I made such a big deal about trying to stick to my new schedule, getting back into a writing routine, etc., etc. Rest assured that since I last posted, life has not been fun. I'm just going to leave it at that so as to not come off as a whiner, because I know in the whole scheme of things, what's gone down on my end since Friday isn't THAT awful.

But I did want to write about one thing that happened Monday afternoon. My husband and I were about 45 minutes away from home for an appointment we had in a northern Chicago suburb. We returned to our car after the appointment was over, got in, my husband drove a few feet... and that's when we heard a sound that was not right. Yep, one of our front tires was completely flat.

We were within a pay-to-park lot, so my husband slowly steered us outside to an open, flat area, and then turned off the engine. When it became apparent that he was going to attempt to change the tire himself, I totally freaked out and told him he'd never be able to do it.

"I've done it before," he replied.

"Oh yeah? When?" I asked. We've only had our current vehicle for two of the twelve years my husband and I have been together -- and before that we didn't even have a car. So I was quite positive he'd never changed a tire since at least 1999.

"I did it once in high school," he said confidently.

"THAT WAS OVER TWENTY YEARS AGO!!!" I yelled, freaking out even more. I mean, if we'd been in the city, or ten minutes away, I would've been OK with the situation. But I knew we had to go along Lake Shore Drive (pic to the left) in order to get home, and that at a slower pace it would probably take a full hour.

So I made my husband humor me and call a service place. They said they'd make it to us in 40 minutes. He told them we'd be waiting, and for the next 10 minutes it appeared that he'd abandoned his quest to change the tire himself. He was checking emails on his Blackberry, while I was Googling "How to change a flat tire" and becoming more and more convinced that we should definitely leave the job to professionals. I read things like, "You must use BRUTE FORCE to loosen the lug nuts -- pretend you're Mr. T" and "If you don't put bricks behind the other tires, the car might start rolling backwards." D'oh!

Now, I don't want to imply in any of this that I think my husband is a weakling or something. I don't at all. But he was wearing a nice suit, going into the office after dropping me at home, and I hated to see him get all sweaty and dirty... IF he could even succeed in getting the flat tire off and the spare on in the first place. Alas, my husband is not a patient man. After going through his emails, he just couldn't help himself. (Or perhaps he simply wanted to prove me wrong -- it had kind of turned into a matter of pride.) He got out of the car and proceeded to take the spare, a jack, and a bunch of other stuff I didn't even know we had from our trunk. And dammit if he didn't replace the tire.

"Don't you think we should wait until the service guys show up to make sure everything's right?" I asked sheepishly after he got back in and started the engine without so much as a word. We'd been there exactly forty minutes, so the repair team should've been arriving at any moment.

"No, we're good," he replied, before calling the service place to cancel... and learning that they HAD NOT EVEN DISPATCHED ANYONE OUT TO OUR LOCATION YET.

So in the end, I'm glad my husband gave it the old college (or I guess in this case, high school) try. We would've been sitting in the suburbs forever, just assuming the service team was on its way. We would've called them again... and they would've eventually shown up. But then my husband wouldn't have gotten a chance to prove me wrong. And such an opportunity almost never happens, you know.

- e


Anonymous said...

Your husband is incredible! He is also quite handsome judging by your Antarctica photo. Can you please write more stories about your husband? Next thing you will tell me he works in finance and plays guitar in a band. I think that I have a crush. :)

Anonymous said...