Friday, September 2, 2011

What a day from hell I had!

Wow, yesterday was a day from hell!
It started out OK.
And it ended OK.
It was the in-between part that was horrendous.
My morning was rather uneventful as I took care of business before heading off for my first appointment of the day.  I had to go to the eye doctor for my quarterly check-in to see if we can get a handle on my ever-changing vision issue (we couldn't).
My eye doctor's assessment was that I'm definitely not seeing well, but she wasn't able to make any changes that would improve things.  Nothing she offered made any difference.  I simply am not seeing well.  We'll try again in another three months.
How comforting.  In the interim, I'll just continue not seeing well.
From there, I was going for my massage therapy.
En route to massage, I stopped in at Walmart to pick up milk -- which we needed desperately -- and a powerbar, which I also needed somewhat desperately.  (The powerbar driving the living room television and paraphernalia had died the day before so I transferred the one from my sanctuary to the more important living room, leaving me without a television in my beloved room -- can't have that!).
I was in Walmart for about five minutes, if that.
My massage therapist's clinic is less than five minutes away from Walmart.
But my car wouldn't start.
Now, it has happened in the past that the car ignored me when I first tried to start it but it always responded on second try.
Not this time though.
Didn't matter what I did, that car gave not a sign of life.
And I didn't have my massage therapist's telephone number with me to let her know that I was stuck, big time!
My first call was to my home.
Fortunately John was there and I explained my situation, telling him that I would call the auto service (I'm still covered by the new car Chrysler service).  But first I had to let Pat know that I wasn't going to be able to have my massage.  Turns out she had called to clarify our arrangement (was she coming to me or was I going to her?) so John was able to give me her number by referring to the caller ID on the phone.
My massage therapist is extremely accommodating of me and she didn't have any other appointments booked following mine, so she told me to just show up when I could (assuming that I'd have the issue resolved within the hour).
My next call was to the auto service.
And while I was on the phone with them, the girl put me on hold while she called the towing company.
That's when the real fun started.
I checked to see if the car would start remotely.
It did.
But as soon as I put the key in the ignition, the car died.
'Cept whatever I did next (removed the key from the ignition?), caused the alarm to start ringing.
And it wouldn't stop!
I kept hitting the panic button on the remote but that didn't turn off the yelling.
So when the girl came back on the line, there I was, sitting in my car, with it yelling at me, and she's trying to tell me that a tow truck would be along soon.  She explained  that the car would stop yelling in about five minutes.
Along came a Walmart employee, in obvious distress from the racket my car was making.
I opened the car door to tell her that I was having car trouble (not stealing the car) and she asked if I have a panic button.
"Yes," I said, "but it doesn't do anything."  I again hit the panic button and the car shut up.  Apparently it wanted me to open the door to turn off the alarm -- it wouldn't turn off while I was in the car with the door shut.  Lesson learned!
The girl on the other end of the phone advised me not to "try anything else" but to wait for the tow truck.
I decided to take her advice.
A few minutes later, a rep from Chrysler called me back to tell me that the tow truck would be here in five minutes.
Sure enough, within five minutes, the truck drove right in front of me, looking for my vehicle.  I jumped out and waved him down.
It took him about a nanosecond to determine that it wasn't my battery, but he couldn't do much except reach the same conclusion as I had -- my car was not recognizing my key.
"Do you have another key?" he asked.
"Yes, but at home," I replied.  "And I just tried to call my husband again, but he didn't answer."
I tried phoning home again and this time John answered.  I asked him to come right away and bring the other car key with him.
At least I had company while I waited for John to get there.
During this time, my massage therapist called to check on my progress and I brought her up to speed on the situation.  We decided that I would surely be at her clinic by 3:00pm. 
After what seemed like an interminable wait, John finally arrived.
He handed me the other key.
I inserted it in the ignition and voila!  Everything happened as it should.
Obviously, for whatever reason, my key was "dead."  Great, good thing that warranty is still in effect!  I guess a call to Chrysler is in order.
I thanked the tow truck driver for his time and off he went.
I thanked John, gave him the milk to take home, and kissed him good-bye.
And I went off to my by then much-needed massage therapy, where I arrived precisely as the clock struck 3:00pm.
As I lay on her table, I was briefly able to forget what I had just gone through.
Once I got home, I put in that call to Chrysler.
Yes, what I experienced absolutely means that my key is dead.
Yes, that's covered by the warranty.
And yes, they have some keys in stock.
Just stop by and bring the other key (ummm, can't get there unless I bring the other key -- that's the only way I can make my car go now).  They need the car and the working key to program the new key.  They'll take care of that for me right away.
I told him I'd see him next Tuesday -- when next I'm in Ottawa for physio.

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