December 15th, 2007

Anime MZ

More Good News, Bad News

So, I got up early this morning and was outside by 8:30. I couldn't get the snow blower started at first, but having daylight made a difference. I pulled the spark plug and it didn't seem fouled. But it was also bone dry - and I didn't see any sign of fuel in the cylinder. I figured there was water in the fuel line. I poured a tiny bit of gas into the cylinder, put the plug back in, and tried it - and it caught, but immediately starved. So I fiddled with the rubber fuel line, put a little more gas in the cylinder, and got it to catch and keep going for a second. It took a few iterations to get it to clear and keep running, but once it did it was fine. So that was good news - I was able to clear the snow from my walk and driveway, and I helped my neighbor with his. And I even did the sidewalk past the next two houses to the corner and helped one of those neighbors by clearly the plow wall around their car. Took about three hours. In the process I emptied my 2 gallon gas can, so it needed refilling.

That leads to bad news. I used the trip to the gas station as a test drive for my car. That didn't go well. My power steering is gone. Trying to steer at low speeds was a struggle. Enough that I didn't feel it was safe to drive. So, after bringing the gas home and getting showered, I took it down to the dealer. I'd previously had some parts ordered for cosmetic fixes (the splitter on the air dam is cracked and the right front wheel well liner is shattered from a rock or something), so I asked them to just do everything - fix what's wrong with the steering, and swap those parts since I had to leave it there anyway. They said they might not get to look at it until Monday, and I didn't hear from them today, so that's probably the case.

So I ended up with a rental car from Enterprise. I have a Dodge Caliber SXT. It is kind of the anti-PT Cruiser. The PT was a small looking car which was deceptively roomy inside. The Caliber is a boxier vehicle that gives the illusion of looking larger, but it is deceptively cramped inside. There is just no way for me to gracefully get in and out. Once I'm in there is plenty of head room - but the center console is poking my right knee, and the door armrest is buried in my left thigh. So if I get T-boned it won't be pretty. But it is acceptable for a few days.

This does lead to more good news. My service agreement has first day rental coverage, so I'm getting at least one free day on the rental. And depending on what they find and what needs to be fixed, I may get more free days. And, also depending on what is found, the steering repair may be covered. I hope so.

By the time I got the rental car it was almost three, and I hadn't had anything to eat yet, so I went and hit 99. I would've posted earlier, but after I got home I was online for a bit, but between stress, lack of sleep, and the work this morning I was wiped and ended up crashing. Which killed my plans to hit Nick's for dinner - guess I'll do that tomorrow. So I'm going to crash for real, instead of just passing out in my clothes.