So I took it in. Thankfully a women was on the check in desk because they always seem to fully understand girl explanations of things that go wrong with a car. 'Any problems to report,' she asked. 'Actually yes, several,' I said. 'Firstly, the brakes make a loud high pitched squealing, squeaking, screeching type sound when I brake and it makes the same noise even when I'm just driving along.' She nodded and typed as though she fully understood what I meant. A man would have been: 'So can you describe the noise more carefully - do you think it's the brake pads or discs - and at exactly what speed are you going when this sound happens and are you sure you're not just imagining it in your teeny tiny lady sized brain?'
Given our obvious connection, I told her about the other problems (I would have stopped after problem one with a man). 'Well there's something wrong with the battery. Even if we jumpstart the car, it won't start again the next day.' 'Ooh, that is annoying isn't it,' she said. Again, a bloke no doubt would have asked if I had the jumper cables put on correctly. Full of confidence I said, 'Oh, and my seat belt is twisted and I can't untwist it.' (thinking this really was a problem I should be able to sort out on my own). 'I hate it when that happens,' she sympathised. I handed in my key feeling fully confident, not something I normally feel at a garage.
I then had to wait for a car hire company to come fetch me and give me my hire car - because I am nothing if not a realist and I knew that my list of problems was probably going to get longer once they started digging around.
And indeed, it was. A man just called. Apparently the brake pads (or discs - one can never be sure) were completely shot in the front and even worse at the back (the reason for the loud squealing/screeching sound). 'It was metal on metal,' he said in a tone that implied I was a car heathen and should be shot. It needs a complete brake fluid change. It needs two new tyres. And a new seatbelt. He didn't mention the battery come to think of it, which was the reason it went in. So all in, with parts and labour, they would like £1400. Fourteen hundred pounds! I'm almost tempted to offer to sleep with the mechanic in a desperate bid to get the price knocked down, but I don't think he'll go for it. Not unless I buy new knickers.
So I said, fine, I guess if we have to do it we have to do it. I then relayed this to husband who immediately said that we can get the tyres done cheaper elsewhere and to cancel all non urgent stuff so that we can sell it. But that would mean phoning the guy back and having to try explain this and figure out which are the non urgent bits and quite frankly, I'm just not up to it. I have told husband to do it but he hasn't and am sure they're now closed. There are certain jobs that are boy jobs, and cars are one of them. I hereby relinquish all responsiblity for the silly cow of a car.
All of this fannying about with a car has not helped my productivity this week. Let's add it up:
- A good hour long wait for my breasts to be fondled on Monday
- A trip to the dentist on Tuesday followed by a trip to the doctor for a child with possible pox
- A day trapped at home with children and no car yesterday
- Half my working day wiped out today plus an eye-stingingly awful bill that's definitely a greater sum than what I made this week working
I am starting to realise why people don't work and are stay at home mothers. I mean it's just about impossible to get a full day's work done. I have a grand total of 4 days of childcare left until 5 September. And more work than I can possibly do. I need to splice myself into 4 people. But I think that would hurt.
I'd better stop moaning and go do my month end accounts and bath beasties - although probably not at the same time. Sigh. Sigh. Sigh.
I hope to post cheerier posts soon.