Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Rolling, Rolling, Rolling - Keep those Wagons Rolling!

I've had a few people ask me if I ever got the van back. When we last met - the dealership was holding the van hostage for mass quantities of homemade Minestrone. Okay, so I made that part up, but you have to admit it sounded ever so much better than they were too busy to get around to it and so took a really long time to get it done.

Really - it was only a day or two, or a week and a half longer than a month without my primary source of transportation. Was the wait worth it? Well - I kind of miss the lime green splotch of spray paint on the back helping me differentiate which identical green soccer mom minivan was mine in the parking lot at Walmart. However - I have to say it looks pretty darn spiffy and immediately pressed it back into service.

The evening I picked it up though - it didn't look or feel quite like what I remembered. The seat was not as comfy as it use to be. Probably because I was a little out of practice, it took a few days - but me and the seat are kindred spirits once again. The front end looked very odd to me and I couldn't figure what was wrong with it at first (aside from missing the big pink splotch of craft paint and not being completely caved in). The next morning it occurred to me - I use to have a bug deflector! This was literally about the only thing on the front of the van that did not break in the collision. I went back the next day to the dealership to a) retrieve my Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness ribbon car magnet, b) inquire as to where I was supposed to attach my front license plate to (new bumper - no mounting bracket) and c) request my bug deflector be reattached. I suppose I should not have been surprised to find they had tossed the deflector, said "oh yeah" about the license plate and had stuck my magnet to the wall in their shop. I mean, these are after all the people who gave me a set of keys to a loaner vehicle clearly marked "Chrysler Sebring" on the tag and actually belonged to a vehicle clearly marked "Dodge Stratus". I pointed out that their loaner vehicle was having a bit of an identity crisis and they just shrugged and said "it's the same thing - they're both white." Uh - okaaaaayyyyyy . . .

Oh the pain in having to hand over the keys to my newly reacquired van for more work! Since I had to take it back in - I asked if they would also replace the back window motor. Might as well get it fixed too right? They had four days before the scheduled appointment fully knowing what the van was coming in for. They dropped me and the two littlest boys off at Walmart, I told them I had to have it back in 2 hours and 15 minutes in order to be on time to pick up my daughter. Two hours and ten minutes after being dropped off, they call me on my cell phone and say they are ready and on their way to pick us up. I wait for 20 minutes and am now late for Sadie. (whose preschool teacher probably seriously wonders if I know how to tell time since we are usually always late). They finally show up with the van and I note two things right off the bat - there is no bug deflector on the front and my front license plate is still on the dashboard. They did nothing! They didn't order the deflector, a mounting bracket OR a window motor in preparation. I ended up having to take it back in again after the parts they required holding my van for 2 hours and 10 minutes while I wandered aimlessly around Walmart with two small children to order finally came in. With parts in hand - it took them one hour and five minutes flat to get it all done, including ferrying me and the kids back and forth between the dealership and Walmart (which are only about half a block away across the street from each other). I suppose I could have saved a fair amount of time waiting had I just walked - though the task of crossing a large busy street and then pushing up a fairly good sized hill 2 kids in a double stroller with all our groceries and dragging a 4 year old along all by my weency lonesome seemed a tad bit daunting. There was also the slushy snowy stuff all over the place issue as well. My double is a great ride - but it is not an all terrain double. Plus, I am still kind of limping around on the mangled foot and hopelessly out of shape - so that also kind of spoiled any thoughts of fresh air and exercise right there. Those who know me also know that my theory on exercise is pretty much this - I don't run unless something is chasing me and it better be pretty darn scary, because I might decide it isn't worth the effort otherwise.

So there you have it - the van is back! Round 'em up, move 'em out - yee haaaaaaaaaaa!

I should probably post a picture of the newly refurbished mode of transportation. I figure it will probably take me 1 month, 1 and a half weeks, 2 hours and 10 minutes to get around to it and will probably be a picture of Matt's Neon instead. Hey - come to think of it - his Neon still has lime green spray paint on it!

Ah yes, good times, good times . ..

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