Thursday, July 16, 2009

The Beetle and the Burst Belt.

This week, the Beetle had an upset stomach. As I left work on Wednesday and started down Hwy 41 from Mt. Laurel, I heard something scrambling around under the hood. Monkeys! It must be monkeys under the hood because that’s exactly what it sounded like. Silly monkeys. I immediately pulled over after only consider for a second “should I continue driving?” and parked on the side of the highway. Fun. Wednesday was a hot day—so hot outside that you could chew the air. It was thicker than the foggy-pea-soup kind of day because thick-like-pea-soup, so-thick-you-can-cut-it-with-a-knife is typically not blazing hot-hot-hot. In a nutshell, it was a perfect Alabama day to spend on the side of an asphalt highway while waiting for AAA to rescue the Beetle.

I called Mr. Husband, making sure to let him know several times that I pulled over immediately, and explained the monkeys under the hood situation. Mr. Husband was in a meeting. He asked, “can’t it wait?” I looked up at the temperature gage to see the 96 degrees staring back at me and said, “No, you need to come now.” He sighed and left his very important meeting to save me. He sighed not because he didn’t want to help but because he was most likely saving the world or ironing his cape in the very important meeting. Mr. Husband loves his work. Fortunately, he loves his helpless wife just a smidgekin more. Apologies around to the work colleagues. It was over 95 degrees. I could have passed out or melted or at the very worst been bored to death.

Mr. Husband and the trusty Lumina (minus any known monkeys) quickly appeared on the edge of the highway. My knight in shining Chevy! Mr. Husband walked to the Beetle to examine the monkey situation. Sure enough, a Gibbon, a Mandrill, and a Howler monkey jumped out of the engine. I knew it! As they scurried away, running down Hwy 41 toward Greystone, we noticed that the curious monkeys had upset some kind of belt. Dangit. The Beetle burst a belt. She was down for the count. Undriveable. Will not go.

Mr. Husband took out his sword and called AAA. We were advised that it would be an hour and a half wait for the tow truck. What now? We can sit in the car and listen to NPR go on and on and on about Sonia Sotomayer, or we can have fun outside the car. Mr. Husband chose air conditioning, I chose the sun. Turns out my pick was the good pick. We skipped about on the side of the road. We took endless photos of me being stern with the Beetle. I laid in the grass near the Beetle, acting like a crash victim. We laughed and had fun and didn’t complain about the burst-o-the-belt.

Why complain? I, like, never do maintenance on that poor car. It’s a diesel, so I hardly ever get the oil changed. The last time I got the oil changed was in 2006. We live close to work and Mr. Husband really doesn’t fit in the Beetle, so she’s not driven that often. It was totally time for something to go awry. We accepted our fate and ran around in the sun until I could feel drops of sweat running down my back. When it’s hot-hot-hot, it’s better to give in and accept it that fight it. We were so very accepting.

The only complaint I had was that Mr. Husband wouldn’t play tag with me. I kept running by him and slapping him on the arm while yelling, “not it!” but he never chased me. I guess he figures I’m pretty much caught. I am it.

This morning, as I got ready for work, I remembered what it was like when I was single and had car trouble. I was alone. I didn’t have AAA. My parents lived in Florida. I didn’t have financial resources to help in an emergency. Almost any car experience was high drama with crying and the wringing of the hands and the pulling of the hair. I can be quite Jobian when I need to be. Car trouble put a serious dent in my life on many levels. It was always a disaster that led to high drama and the bringing of the tears.

Oh, how times have changed. Bob Dylan is right. He always was. I am drenched to the bone, keeping my eyes wide, and lending my hand to this great big changed life of mine. Now, when my car breaks down, it is now an opportunity to spend surprise time with Mr. Husband in an unusual situation. It is time for adventure and fun. There is nothing we cannot handle. Man, I love that man. He came into my life and dried up all the tears. He is so my Super Husband.

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