Sunday, May 16, 2010

A Very Expensive Lesson to Learn

I learned an important lesson this month. It's a lesson that I'm sure most people would roll their eyes and throw stones at me for having to learn the hard way really. Laugh if you must. I at least learned something from it. What is it, you ask? I learned that they people at the auto shop aren't kidding when they tell you to change your oil every 3,000 miles.

Yep. It really needs to be changed. Did you know that going almost 20,ooo miles without changing the oil WILL result in having to get a whole new motor? Yep. It will. Know what else? That motor will cost you nearly $4,000.oo to get. If you happen to be a rich person with money to throw away on the results of stupid mistakes, this is really no big deal. But, if you are like me, and you happen to be just a typical American doing your best to get by day by day AND buy a lovely new home for your family, $4,000.00 is a lot of money.

So, I was without my van for a week. A WEEK!!! Do you know what happens to the mother of five with no vehicle for a full week? It isn't pretty, let me tell you. I was ready to go and rent a donkey or a camel or some other beast of burden just so I could get out and about and do something, anything really. I was delighted when Byron came home and needed a gallon of milk. I immediately volunteered every chance I got to go and run the menial errands.

Then, we finally got the stupid thing back, and it died. Again. I called the repair shop all hot under the collar prepared to threaten them with...with...with CHILDREN! Yes! That was it! I'd tell them that they could take all the time they needed to fix it, and I'd be happy to wait in the sales office with all five kids. I'd tell them that Aiden would be good, but would sit there pouting the whole time because he wasn't with his friend, Jake, eating his mother's food. He insists that Jake's mom's food can be burnt and would still be better than mine. I'd invite CJ to ask the repair man all the questions he could think of and then tell him jokes. There isn't enough medication on the planet to help a repair guy who has CJ "helping" him do his job. Rachel would be polite enough, but would feel the need to sing every song she knows with all the wrong words and completely off key at the top of her lungs. Drezden would spend the entire time crying for his binky, which I would bring with me, and just forget that it was right there in the diaper bag. And Liam? Well, he'd poop. There isn't a ventilation system in the world strong enough to mask the horror that is Liam's poop.

That was my plan. I was going to bring the kids with me to help motivate them to get the job done. To my dismay, though, they were very polite and helpful. They came and towed the van in, and got straight to work on diagnosing the problem.

I learned another lesson that day. If you have a dead battery, and don't at least try to jump it, you'll end up paying for a new battery, the tow to get it to the shop. And, yes. All of that will be on top of the nearly $4,000.oo you paid the week before for not changing the oil.

1 comment:

Amy said...

btdt. Tim neglected changing the oil in one of our cars. It threw a rod, died, had to be towed and we ended up having to spend $5K on a used car b/c it wasn't even worth trying to fix the dead one that we had just paid off.