Even Good Cars Go Bad Sometimes

I imagine the conversation went something like this:

Random Honda mechanic’s girlfriend:   I really want an iPad for Christmas.

Random Honda mechanic:  Sorry dear, but iPads aren’t cheap and money is tight, with the downturned economy and all.  How about a lovely assortment of sweet pea and violet scented bath products instead?

Random Honda mechanic’s girlfriend:  I don’t care if money is tight; I want an iPad. Do what you must to make sure that happens.  And don’t you dare buy me bath products.

Random Honda mechanic:  Okay precious, I’ll do my best.  Perhaps I’ll sell my plasma to earn enough money to buy you an iPad for Christmas.

Random Honda mechanic’s girlfriend:  Better yet, perhaps a  dark haired woman from the Alexandria area will have trouble with her husband’s twelve year old Civic and when she brings the car in for service, you can give her a laundry list of repairs the car might need.  If you make the list long enough, you’ll definitely earn enough to buy me an iPad.

Random Honda mechanic:  What a brilliant idea!  This is what I’ll do.

So, maybe it didn’t happen that way exactly, but it’s safe to assume that someone at Sheehy Honda is going to have a very merry Christmas on behalf of our poor, sick Civic.

In August I paid $127 for them to tell me the battery cables were loose.   I hoped this would not be the case again and sure enough it wasn’t.  I still don’t know why the battery keeps dying but it’s being fixed.  It’s being fixed along with several other problems.  I was at the dentist when I spoke with the person in the service center so I didn’t catch every detail, but I caught the most important one:  the cost.

Merry Christmas from Sheehy Honda, please pay us $1395 to fix your stupid old car.


Aside from the faulty battery situation which has plagued me this year, our little Civic has been such a good car.   It’s the first car we bought brand new; it’s the car we’ve brought to five different homes; it’s the car we brought Caroline home in; it’s the car Caroline locked herself in at a McDonald’s in Front Royal, Virginia.  It’s a Smith family institution.  And while it would be nice to replace it with something shinier, more powerful and less broken, new cars are expensive and car payments give me the shakes.  In a way we’re looking forward to bringing our green Civic full circle; to return it to its birthplace and homeland in Hawaii.  I’m not sure it’ll come back to the mainland with us when our time in Hawaii is up, but we’re okay with that.  Our little Civic will live out its days under the tropical sun, letting its coat of paint get crusty from the salty sea air and red Hawaiian mud.  It’s really kind of beautiful, this circle of life, don’t you think?

Anyhow, December is proving to be kind of costly.  Car repairs, family obligations, presents and our impending trip to Charlotte on Christmas day have added to the toll.  On the one hand, I kind of want to cry about it, but on the other hand, I’m gaining TONS of points on my credit card, which I’m saving to use to buy a new camera lens.  Thanks to that random Honda mechanic and his crafty girlfriend, I’ll be getting that camera lens sooner rather than later.

In other car related news (aka, let’s stomp on Alison when she’s down) I met with my gym friends for our monthly coffee date today.  After over an hour of catching up on gym gossip, I left the coffee shop and planned to go grocery shopping at the commissary.  As I approached my car, I noticed my back tire was a little low.  And a little low it was, all thanks to a big giant nail stuck in the tire.


So, instead of going to the commissary, I drove to the Ford dealer to have my tire repaired, which, thankfully only cost $25.

I guess some random Ford mechanic’s girlfriend isn’t getting an iPad this year.



6 responses

  1. Oh my goodness that really stinks!!! Just keep thinking somehow you are getting a free camera lens out of the deal. Also bringing the car full circle seems fitting! If you don’t go to your sisters for Christmas, I plan on making the other turkey and you guys can come here! Hopefully this finally fixes Craigs car and all will be right with the world again.

    • Thanks Mandy. I haven’t made out final reservations yet; hopefully the weather will cooperate (although it’s been pretty warm lately, so it just might); if it doesn’t and we can’t go, we’ll be at your place with bells on. Thanks for thinking of us!

  2. Poor Random Ford Guy’s Girlfriend! No iPad for her. Honda Guy’s GF has all the fun!

    I love the thought of your Civic retiring in Hawaii! Even if it is costing you tons of moolah now, it sounds like the car has treated you well. It’s older than your kid! That’s is my idea of getting your money’s worth.*

    • Yeah, it’s been a good car; even though it’s almost 12 years old, it still gets great gas mileage. It was a good investment and we’re looking forward to returning it to its homeland.

      In the mean time, I’m considering going to Honda repair school. Either that or washing machine/dryer repair. We once had to pay a guy nearly $300 for five minutes of work. I bet his whole family is getting iPads this year! 😉


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