Saturday, December 05, 2009


I woke up from a bad night's sleep with a splitting headache. I just wanted to stay curled up in bed, but I had things to do. I had a package to collect from the post office and yarn to buy for Christmas projects. I showered, dressed, grabbed all necessary shopping tools and headed out to my car to find the remote door unlocker thing wouldn't work. No problem, I have the spare upstairs. I ran up to get the spare remote, back down to my car and--nope, it's not working either. I noticed the red blinking light that indicates my car is alarmed was not red or blinking. With an uneasy feeling, I manually unlocked the car. The dashboard clock was blank, as was the odometer. Oh, Balls. I looked quick to make sure I hadn't left the lights on, but no, all were off. With a heavy sigh, I called AAA.

The truck arrived in 15 minutes. He opened the battery case and said, "Well, your first problem is the battery's not secure." Huh? I didn't know what he meant so I said, "Can you start it?" He hooked up the cables and checked the voltage. The battery was so dead it barely registered on the meter. The mechanic told me it was too dead to charge. (about 4.3 volts) He said that even if he could get it started, the likelihood of me being stuck again once I turned the car off was great. I asked him about the battery not being secure, since it was after all in a case. He showed me a threaded hole where a bolt is supposed to go which attaches to either a small piece at the bottom of the battery or a cross bar on top of the battery--either way, it keeps the battery from moving around inside the plastic casing. My battery was last changed about six months before I bought the car. The A-hole who changed it never put the securing bolt back on. That means my battery has been bouncing around for four years. No wonder it's dead. I thanked the mechanic for his time and went back inside where I proceeded to have a minor breakdown and sobbed for about 20 minutes.

Twenty minutes of self-pity was all I needed. I quickly went online to find out where I could buy a bus pass, what time the Burbank bus arrived and what time Unwind closed today. I had gift certificates in my purse and projects to be knit. I walked to the post office to get my package, then down to the store to buy a TAP card for the bus, then talked to my Katie while I waited for the bus.

After taking far too long picking out yarn for a baby hat (I'm blaming the splitting headache) and spending an hour choosing the right shade of red for Katie's mittens, I left without buying anything extravagant for myself. I mean, when you have gift certificates you use them to the fullest. Again, the headache made it difficult to look at yarn.

So, Jamie is left sitting on the street until payday which is ten days away. Tuesday is street cleaning and while I've been lucky (knock wood) with the parking enforcement and my past due parking permit so far, I fear that Tuesday morning the parking tickets will rain down upon my car like shoes at an Iraqi press conference. Parking without a proper permit = $58. Parking on street cleaning day = $60. Parking with past due registration = $25. They usually only pick one offense but I've been pressing my luck since October and I'm fearing the worst. But I've got a bus pass good for 7 days starting tomorrow. I may just ride around town because I can.

Oh, bother.

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