Thursday, May 23, 2013

No drive

A very dramatic depiction of how I'm feeling right now.

Yesterday was plain awful.

Hopefully you got the Annie reference, but there's really no other way to say it. Wednesday was one of the worst days I've had in a long time.

As I mentioned in my last post, I was heading out of town to attend my youngest brother's graduation. I packed up the car with presents for him, my nieces and my sister-in-law, who's about to have her first child, and left at 10 a.m. Wednesday morning. I didn't eat any breakfast because I was planning to get to my parents' house around 1:30 — but I never made it.

Instead, I ended up stranded on the side of I-15 between the small towns of Malad and Downey, Idaho. The Accord, which was humming along, suddenly decided to shut off cruise control, decelerate on its own, roar louder than my music and blow steam out of the engine.

I will be honest: I was not exactly brave. I pulled over to the side of the road, called Andrew and dissolved into tears. As he and his dad raced up from Utah to come rescue me, two people from Malad stopped to help and looked under the hood with me (OK, I fielded calls from my dad as the good samaritans quickly realized that it was the transmission and noticed gas and transmission fluid all over the road beneath the car).

Finally, my dad called a tow truck from Malad to come get me, and Andrew and his dad got into town to assess the damage. Unfortunately, the mechanics couldn't fix the car there, so we would have to tow it to either Pocatello or Logan — and the insurance wouldn't cover the cost until later in the week, since we'd already had it towed into town once.

We ended up leaving the car there and driving home in his dad's car while his dad drove his truck home. They'd driven separately in the hopes of towing the car home and me driving the rest of the way to my parents' house in my father-in-law's car — but that option was quickly shot down when the mechanic told us that a) we could start the car on fire doing that, since it's an automatic, not a manual and b) it's illegal in Utah to tow a car with a tow rope, and we could have been fined or had the car impounded. Ironically, it's not illegal in Idaho to do that (not that that's surprising).

The baby shower invitations I spent a week making.

So Andrew drove us back home and I sat in the passenger seat and cried. I had been planning this trip for months and spent hours making embossed baby shower invitations for my sister-in-law's shower on Friday. I had been planning to relax with Andrew (who was coming up separately on a shuttle the next day) and driving through Grand Teton National Park or possibly Big Sky, Montana. I was planning to support Reggie and see him graduate, since I missed my other two siblings' graduations for various reasons. It was horribly depressing to be heading the opposite direction when I'd been looking forward to this vacation so desperately.

I know this is not really a big deal in the scheme of things. I wasn't hurt, I was on a road I've driven a hundred times (and I was there in broad daylight), I had a smartphone and could quickly call people or access the internet, and I have a husband and father-in-law who love me enough to drop what they're doing and race up to help me. I have a dad who, despite being in the middle of a very hectic work day, kept calling to make sure I was OK and quickly found some very nice people to tow my car and then give us great tips on finding a shop that could fix it.

But with one car totaled and the other one stuck in Idaho until we figure out what to do, I am feeling a little low this week and wondering how we're going to afford a new car AND a brand-new transmission that will cost at least two grand.

Here's hoping the weekend will be better! It can only go up from here, right?


  1. That really is terrible! I would have definitely reacted the same way. And I totally got the Annie reference ha.

  2. It was wonderful that you had so much help. Did you FedEx those invites? Did you borrow a car? Things can only get better.

    1. Fortunately, the invites had already gone out, so I didn't have to mail anything overnight. And while I didn't borrow a car to make it up there, we did buy a new car this weekend so I can make another trip soon. :)

    2. Are you going to have a "car reveal" post soon? Congrats.

    3. I will! I posted a picture on my Instagram, but it's going to make it over to my blog very soon. :)

  3. Oh, Lindsay! I'm so sorry! My husband got stranded in Malad once on his way to a friend's wedding. Those invitations are absolutely adorable! I'm sorry things have not gone as planned. :-(

  4. The baby shower invitations are beautiful. You are one talented lady. I'm sorry it went the way you haven't planned. x

  5. Goodness. This story sounds just awful! I'm glad you're safe, but I totally know the stranded feeling when you're without a car.

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