My Week: Lows and Highs

Okay, okay. I know I got that backwards but that’s the way it happened. Sunday morning, I got up early and dashed around so I wouldn’t be late for the business meeting. All showered, dressed and breakfasted, I posted on Facebook, “I don’t wanna go!” Well…

The car started as a good car should and I started backing up the driveway. Something didn’t feel right. When I got onto the paved part, I stopped, got out and did a 360 degree inspection. That’s when I discovered the right front tire was flat. And I mean FLAT. Not low. Flat. I backed the car up a little and left her where she was.

It was a rainy day (no surprise there–we’ve had our share of rain and somebody else’s) so I called my neighbor and asked him to look at the tire the next day. My Facebook cry had been heard. I really hadn’t hoped it would be in that way.

The rest of my Sunday was sort of shot. DD and I had a good visit that afternoon and I had to admit to her I hadn’t even exercised yet. When I asked her about the house, she said she didn’t want to get her hopes up. The landlord set the rent higher than she and merm are willing to pay so they had made an offer. She didn’t know if it would be accepted or not. After we finished talking, I made myself get up and walk.

Next day was beautiful. My neighbor lost no time tackling the tire. There was a knock on the door and I thought he’d gotten that taken care of quickly. He was standing there with the tire tool in his hand. The upshot of the conversation was that he hadn’t fixed the tire because it wasn’t fixable. The sidewall had a hole in it. I walked out to the car with him and there it was, a gaping wound.

He finished taking the tire off and I got the mini-bicycle tire out of the trunk. When he got THAT on and let the weight of the car down on it, it was almost flat. He told me he’d air it up before I went wherever it was I’d have to go.

Well. If you have followed along on my blog for the last several months, at least, you would know I bought that tire and its twin in mid-October. I got the receipt out of the glove box and called the company in town where I got it. After reading off all the numbers, the man told me a new tire would be $69. When asked, he said he didn’t know if they could do anything about the price but he’d look at the tire when I came in. The new tire would be there the next day.

He told me the truck usually got there by 1. I’d gotten up, juned around and was ready by noon. I pulled the car down close enough to my neighbor’s garage that he could get to it with the air compressor. He aired up the tire. By that time, I’d figured out what had caused the problem.

Years ago when the phone company relaid the line after it was cut by the lawn mower, they had cut through the tree root that had kept them from laying it in a trench in the first place. The root had risen higher as the weight of the tree pulled on it. When I’d pulled into the driveway after church, I remembered colliding with it (I always steered clear of it but I was too far to the right that time). I had no idea it was sharp enough to do any damage. My neighbor said when the Garage Guest got up, he’d get the saw and cut it off so it would do no more harm.

The truck was late so after I’d called twice, I asked the man to call me when it got there. I busied myself around the house and got several things accomplished before the call came.

Much to the consternation of the people behind me, I took it slow and easy down the mountain. I’m sure the line of drivers behind me were unhappy because that old woman didn’t know how to drive.

I’d been praying long and hard about the tire and having to replace it. Even though I have money budgeted for the car, it wasn’t necessarily earmarked to replace a four month old tire.

I got to the tire store and gave the man the key. I made sure to remind him to look at the tire and see what he could do about the price. Then I settled in to read my book while I waited.

As he came through with my tire and the new one, he said something about calling his boss and I thought there was something else about the Internet. I had no idea what the WWW would have to do with it but I breathed another prayer and went back to my book.

A few minutes later, he came back in and said something about the Internet again and that he could give me a discount. I thought maybe 10%? but I didn’t say anything. Then he brought the invoice for the tire over and explained. Invoice price for the tire was $54. He was authorized to split that so all I would have to pay would be $27—dealer net. I wish I had a picture of my expression about then. He told me just to say nice things about them. Believe me, that isn’t difficult! If you’re ever in the area and your tires need attention, Bradley Tire (423-775-8092, 4455 Rhea County Highway) will treat you right. And tell ’em Tommie sent you.

While I waited the rest of the time, he told me about putting four new tires on his truck. On the way home, a woman paying more attention to her cell phone than her driving ran him off the road. The two right tires were ruined. Not the tread (which is guaranteed) but the sidewalls. There was nothing to do but replace them.

Then he told me the mini bicycle tire is tougher than most people think. He’d driven 450 miles on one because none of the tire stores along the way back from vacation had the size tire he needed.

You can be sure I thanked him and, most of all, God for the mercy shown this aging woman.

A family friend passed away this week and the pastor left voice mail and said they wanted me to sing “The Holy City”. My neighbor (the female portion) is in Florida on a job. The deceased was her aunt. I told her I would NOT sing for the funeral. I don’t sing in public any more and that song is hard to sing at the best of times. The pastor had given the daughter my phone number but I never heard from her. I think he gave her my cell phone number and I can’t get a signal here at home.

Anyway, calls went back and forth between me and my neighbor and they had found someone else to sing IF I would play it. I have never played that song all the way through in one sitting that I can remember and certainly not in public. I said they should find it on CD and that’s what they did.

For the fourth time in six days, I got myself up so I was presentable to be seen in public and went to the funeral. I was OH! so glad I wasn’t singing. The daughter sent word that I could play the keyboard if I wanted but I didn’t want. I saved the handouts for my neighbor so she can see them when she gets back from Florida.

On both Tuesday and Thursday, I shopped Wally World and have gotten to be quite a pro at price compare. I study up on the sales at other area stores and memorize the items and prices. This week, I saved 18 cents each on avocados and a total of $3 on oranges. I’m pretty proud of myself.

My exercise has been kind of up and down along with the tire. Hopefully, I can do better next week. My winning streak at Wordscraper has been broken.

This morning, my neighbor called me all excited. The Garage Guest has a job! He had applied yesterday and was hired on the spot! I hope he sticks with it. It’s at a factory so it won’t be quite so seasonal—though they do manufacture air conditioners.

After church today, I went by the nursing home. Before I went to Genese’s room, I saw two of my friends and former co-workers in the corridor. There were hugs all around plus I got updated with some of the happenings at the hospital. It made me that much happier I’m not having to cope with the drama.

I took Genese a bag of tortilla chips so she could celebrate National Tortilla Chip Day a day late. She was also the recipient of my last Super Duper Gut Bomb. I failed to tell her to have it heated up sans aluminum foil. I hope it was edible.

I got to meet Genese’s future sister-in-law. She seems very nice and is quite attractive. I visited briefly and left.

The rest of the day (almost) was spent stuffing my face. I really didn’t need to eat that much but I did it anyway. Tomorrow is another day. Maybe I can behave then but don’t count on it.

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