A story for Friday

Last week, the check engine light came on in Patricia Jean, my new-to-me Toyota Camry Hybrid.

And seeing that my last experience with a check engine light—the time my VW Jetta’s engine bit the dust—was a bit traumatic, I instantly feared the worst.

But knowing I couldn’t just wish it away, I called the service place and took it in the next morning. By mid-afternoon they called and told me it was just a sensor and would be easily repaired once they had the part. So they ordered the part and we waited. Finally, this past Wednesday they called. The sensor was in and I could bring the car in on Thursday. I readily agreed.

Then Thursday morning came. And I realized that I had to bring food for a meeting with me to work. I also had my big honking purse and a bag I carry work stuff in. But, I soldier on and head the service department. Check-in was relatively easy and fast and I go in the waiting area to wait for the courtesy van driver to announce his presence.

And I wait.

With a chip and dip plate and a huge bags of pita and tortilla chips along with spinach artichoke and layered dip on my lap.

Five minutes pass. No big deal.

Then 10.

Then 20. I’ve now been in the waiting area for 30 minutes and there’s no courtesy van in sight. I could walk to work; it’s not actually that far. . .but it’s misting and I have about 4 tons of stuff to carry. So, not wanting to be “that” person but wanting to get to work, I approach the cashiers and ask. They stare at me like I’m the most impatient person ever and tell me it will be a few minutes. Thankfully, it was. I gratefully grab my stuff and head out to the van, thinking in a few minutes I’ll be at work.

Little did I know the adventure was just beginning!

The driver zipped out of the parking lot and decided to take another lady to her destination first because it was “closer.” Maybe he was just confused, because it wasn’t closer. So now it’s after 8 a.m. and I’m somewhere off of 12 Avenue and seemingly getting further away from work with every minute. After dropping that lady off, we head for work. . . .down 12 Avenue. If you’ve ever been to Nashville, you know that if you take 12th north toward downtown, you end up under the railroad tracks and have to drive until you hit Church Street to get anywhere in the downtown vicinity. So we drove past all of the Gulch apartment, the railroad tracks, the underneath of Union Station, and some new apartments that are being built along 12th near the Church Street intersection. Finally, we turn onto Church Street and the sign for the street my office is on is in sight! Almost there!

Then, the guy gets completely confused about where to drop us (me and another girl who works here) off and ends up dropping us off at the Credit Union entrance. Which requires a special pass that neither of us had. So we had to march across the visitor’s parking lot, maneuver through the double set of doors in the lobby and get into the building. All the while, I was carrying my purse, my work bag and 4 million pounds of food and serving dishes.

And while I was finally in the building, I was FAR from my office. I had to traipse past the cafe, through display area and up a set of stairs and up the elevators. I finally got to my office around 8:30 a.m. And by that point, I was exhausted.

Hopefully, my next time at the service department won’t end up being such an adventure!

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