Thursday, February 14, 2013

The Chocapocalypse and Brokebrake Mountain

Otherwise titled "I'm Unstoppable...Literally."

Hi!  Happy Valentine's Day, hope you all had a good one.  If you couldn't tell by the title and sub/alternate titles, mine has been...eventful.

I go to my parent's house every Thursday and Friday to work for my Dad's company (I run the Facebook page.  You can find it if you look very closely at my page.  I'm not giving it, because I know who lurks on the interwebs, and that's dangerous).  We're home-based right now, as an online company.  It's going well.  I get there, I park, I bring in my family valentines because I'm a good daughter.  I greet my sister and we get to chatting (which always seems to take forever, because neither of us is willing to stop the conversation because it's so diverting from the things we really ought to be doing.  We're master procrastinators).  She lets the dogs out and back in, and the cat can't decide if she wants to come in or not, because the dogs are right at the door.  So I step out to try and pick her up and bring her inside.  As she is a cat, she runs off.  As I am an idiot, I chase after her because apparently in my head, if a cat runs away, it obviously wants to be loved (wtf brain?).  I take two steps out onto the deck and suddenly snap; my foot goes through a board.

So there's a foot-shaped hole in my parent's deck now.  This is just the beginning of the day, by the way, folks.

Work goes smoothly and there are little to no glitches thus far.  I have at this point learned that we are having dinner with my grandparents (the ones who live close by), and I decide, well hell, I'll drive myself and just head home afterwards, nbd!

On our way to the door, I grab all of my things, including a box of chocolate that my Dad got for me.  I'd already eaten three pieces, but there were more and I'll be honest, it's my favorite part of V-day.  I've got my coat on and I'm waiting for everyone else to get ready to go, when all of the sudden, I feel the box shift and slide on top of the things it was resting on in my hands.  I tried to grab it but the next thing I know, it's landed on its side, popped open, and ALL of the chocolate is on the floor.

Amidst giggles, reminders to brush it off when I go to eat it later, and desperate attempts to mesh the words "chocolate" and either "apocalypse" or "catastrophe" together, I had to pick up my pieces of chocolates from the floor.  It was very sad.

This is not the end of the tale, however.

Remember how I was going to drive myself to dinner with my parents, sister, and grandparents?  In my car?  My poor Aluminum Falcon (seriously, if you haven't seen that Robot Chicken episode yet, you are MISSING OUT on some great Star Wars references.  You're already on the internet.  Youtube is just a click away).

A number of weeks ago, I was traveling up (and down and back up and then back down) a mountain to visit my dear friend, GL.  This was probably three or so weeks ago.  I turn onto her driveway -- gravel -- and suddenly, as I'm slowing down, I hear this strange grinding sound in the back on the passenger side of the car.  Now, I've been in cars where the brakes were wearing down, and this didn't sound like that.  Naturally, as a girl who has somehow managed to avoid being taught how cars actually work (magic is apparently NOT the answer), I assumed that a piece of the gravel from the driveway had somehow been kicked into the braking system, especially when the sound persisted when I drove off.

I assumed it was gravel for three or so weeks.  The sound never actually stopped.  Sometimes it was worse than others.  Sometimes it was less.  But it never went away unless the car came to a complete stop or I had taken my foot off the brake completely.

My parents live on a not inconsiderable hill.  It's by no means a large hill, but it's deceptively steep.  You would only know it was as steep as it is if you'd ever run up it, or tried to drive up it in icy or snowy weather.  Or if you tried to stop at the stop sign at the bottom of the hill with a completely shot brake system.

Guess which one I got to contend with today.  I managed to stop the car enough to pass as a rolling stop at the bottom of the hill, but I knew there was something wrong with the brakes at that point.  I kept going (because I'm an idiot) because my parents were driving behind me, and I thought it would work itself out.

I make my second turn and I realize that it's dangerous at this point when I can barely slow down enough to make the turn without hitting the person waiting at that stop sign (yes, I live in an area with lots of stop signs.  We make due).  I pulled into a church parking lot and managed not to cry when I got out of the car as Mom and Dad pulled up next to me.  It was a close thing though.

Dad drove me back home while Mom and KW drove to meet my grandparents at the restaurant.  Dad then told me that my brake pressure was off, and I probably had a bit of a leak in my line, but that it wasn't safe to drive, really.

On our way home I got a phone call from work asking me if I had school tomorrow.  Which I do.  During peak hours.  They know this.  I know we're short handed, and that we're really busy, but the time they would need me would be right when I would need to leave.  It's a little pointless to call me in for that long, and they luckily realized that so I get to go to class tomorrow.  Yay?

We made it back home safely.  And then we checked the wheel I had heard the grinding sound from, and lo and behold, there was a small puddle of fluid by the tire.  Who'd have thunk?

So we take his car to dinner instead.  Dinner was uneventful, except that it was dinner with my grandparents and therefore shenanigans happened. (I believe at one point I said that "The Falcon is a hunk of junk but she'll get you from Point A to Point B.  She just might not stop at Point B." and KW said something along the lines of "Yeah Point A to Point B,C,D,E,F,G...")  But that's typical.  After dinner, we go to the auto parts store to pick up brake fluid so he can top it off enough to get to the mechanic tomorrow so that my brakes can be fixed and I can have my car back.

Oh if only it were that easy.  We got the brake fluid, and we even got home.  We popped the hood of my car and filled the reservoir.  Dad pumped the brakes and then he checked the tire again.

Apparently my car has lost the ability to hold its brake fluid.  So our mechanic might be making a house call tomorrow, if Dad can't patch it up to get it to the garage.

And now I'm driving Clifford, the boat of a mini van (I say this because the 'Falcon, junky though she may be, is a smaller car.  A minivan sure does seem a bit like a land yacht after driving a four door sedan around town).

I've decided that Technology hates me, and that there are many reasons to hate February 14th other than just being single.

Until Next Time, Dear Readers (dear God, I hope there's a next time *knocks on wood*)

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