Vehicular Repair and Convenient Inconveniences

I suppose I should count it as a blessing when inconvenient things happen in the most convenient way possible. As an example, our Chevy Venture broke down this morning. Howard and I were on a run to Sam’s club together to confer about patio furniture. We stopped for gas, but when Howard turned the key to restart the car, nothing happened. The same nothing continued to happen the next twenty times as both Howard and I kept trying. We ended up pushing the car into a parking space and calling a neighbor to come retrieve us so that Howard could get back to work while we considered what to do.

In the end the car was towed to an automotive place within walking distance of our house. They determined the starter motor had died. An hour and $525 later, we have a functioning vehicle again. It was inconvenient, and more expensive than I wanted it to be. It also underlined clearly that our van is pushing twelve years old and 100,000 miles. It is show its age and moving out of the realm of quirky and into being unreliable. So I’m contemplating the further expense of replacing it. Not something I really wanted to do this year. But it didn’t break down in Goblin Valley last week, when we were 150 miles from the nearest tow truck and automotive repair shop. It didn’t leave my seventeen year old daughter stranded and in need of rescue. It didn’t fail on a day when I needed to rush down to a school to help with a child emergency. It even failed early enough in the day that I was able to arrange alternate rides for my kids after school, and I had the car back before the time that Patch and I picked for his special Mother son outing. The inconvenient thing happened as conveniently as possible.

Similarly, we’ve incurred quite a few extra expenses this month. The process of evaluating Gleek has not been covered by health insurance, nor will her therapy appointments be. Howard’s visits with a psychiatrist for depression have also not been covered. Link and Kiki both had minor medical issues requiring visits and lab work which are somewhat covered. Gleek got braces. The car needed repair. Our vacuum cleaner died. Sometime in the next month or two Kiki’s college is going to start asking for payments against her tuition and dorm registration. Yet, we have the money to cover all of this. It arrived before all of this did, in a completely unexpected level of success during the challenge coin kickstarter. My ballpark mental math says that even with all the unexpected expenses, we’ll be in better financial shape than we were before the kickstarter. Though I will be happier when the flow of bills and money has settled down enough for me to really see what is going on.

Patch and I were able to go on our planned date this evening. It was a special outing that we’ve been planning for a week because he needed it. So we went to see The Croods, which we’d both seen before, and out to sushi. It was a lovely time that I’m extremely grateful I did not have to reschedule at the last minute. Now I have to start shopping around and considering options for a replacement vehicle. I’m not looking forward to having payments again.