Wednesday, December 14, 2011

It's Not Over Until I Have A Nervous Breakdown

People tell me I'm pessimistic and a nervous Nelly, but it's only because of my sixth sense.  I get gut feelings about things, and I knew as soon as I found out that the truck I bought didn't come with a complete tow package, it would somehow, some way, turn into a huge fiasco.  When you consider that the majority of people who live in my state only have a high school education or less, it's pretty easy for something to go wrong when you are hiring a local to do a service for you.

So, today I set out to pick up some things at the market, handle some banking business, register my new truck at the DMV, pick up some office supplies, and buy an anniversary gift for my husband.  Simple, right? 

It started out well.  I found what I needed at the market, although it didn't help that my mentally challenged brother phoned me while I was shopping and people kept coming up to me asking if I need assistance while I was trying to help my brother handle his latest emergency and shop for my family at the same time.  My multitasking skills only go as far as being about to do two things at once.  When you throw in a third, I have a melt down.  And I absolutely hate it when people talk to me while I'm talking to someone else on the phone.  We were supposed to learn back in kindergarten to wait our turn, yet so many adults now-a-days are incapable of doing that.  I can't process two people talking to me at the same time.  Someone has to be ignored, and I usually end up ignoring the person who is interrupting. 

The banker gave me some good news in that the bank finally set up things so that I can now take care of what I need to online without having to make a trip to the bank every couple of weeks, which is awesome.

The DMV was shockingly easy.  I usually have to wait a minimum of two hours before I can even get served, but I didn't even get to sit down and they called me up to a window.  The lady was snarky and rude, but she got my vehicle registered in a matter of minutes, so I let her have her inhospitable moment without complaining.

Leaving the DMV was when things started to go haywire.  I had noticed that this red warning light was on all the time on my dashboard.  I thought at first it was the light that tells you to put on your seat belt, and it was showing up because I had my purse sitting on the passenger side seat.  However, when I left the DMV I set my purse on the floor and saw that the warning light was still on.  It was very distracting, so I stopped in a parking lot and looked up what it meant in the manual.

The manual said that it meant there was a problem with my airbags and I should take the truck into the dealership immediately.  So, I did.  I told them I bought the truck two weeks ago, and this air bag warning light won't go off.  They freaked, because that's a liability.  They said they wouldn't be able to get to my truck for about two hours, but they could drive me wherever I wanted while I was waiting.  I let their shuttle service drive me to a shopping center where I could eat lunch and look for the gift.

I found a little gift, but not really at all what I hoped to find, when the dealership service department called me and said that whoever installed my trailer brake system drilled through the electrical wire that controls the airbag system.  They suggested I take the truck back to them to fix.  While I was waiting for the shuttle to arrive, I called my husband to ask if he could pick me up on his way home from work, because I would have to be leaving my truck in the shop for repairs.  He was bummed, because this was the first day he's had in years to do anything fun.  He was going bowling with some coworkers after work.  I told him to go bowling, and said I'd call our son and have him pick me up.

He said he didn't want the truck accessory place to fix my truck, because if they did such sloppy work in the first place, how could we trust them to get it right the second time?  He said he was going to meet me at the dealership to discuss our options.  The dealership said that the repairs were not covered under their "bumper-to-bumper" warranty, it would cost us a minimum of $400 just for them to look at it, they will probably need the truck for a few weeks, and they will have to rip out all the carpeting and seats.  I freaked.

I was shaking all over and on the verge of vomiting.  I just spent a huge chunk of my inheritance on this new truck and not even two weeks later they have to strip it to make a repair.  All I could think of was that I had made a grave mistake and should have never traded in my old truck.  I should have just laid low, because every time I buy a new product I regret it.

The salesman who sold me the truck came over to ask us what was going on, and we explained it to him.  He made me feel a little better by offering to take responsibility to resolve the issue.  He was the one who set up this appointment between me and the truck accessory shop, which represents the Dodge dealership.  Of course, he didn't know they were going to botch the job, but I appreciated him stepping in and not just letting us flail in the wind.

I drove the truck over to the truck accessory place, praying that I didn't get into an accident along the way, because if I did, the airbags wouldn't deploy.  They took it back to their shop right away.  I waited for about half an hour, and then my husband called and said he was coming over there too, just to make sure that these guys don't try to screw me.  We had this fear that they would just cut the wire to the warning light so that it would turn off, and then tell us they fixed the airbag system.

Sure enough, they brought the truck out after about half an hour and announced that they fixed it.  I was skeptical, because the dealership said fixing it would required stripping the interior and inspecting the entire airbag system.  They explained that they just looked at the wire where they installed the brake system and saw that they nicked it.  They heat-sealed it and moved it away from the screws, then reset the computer on the truck. 

I said, "Are you sure the airbag system works now?"

The guy got angry with me for questioning him.  I was taken aback, because if anyone should have been angry, it should have been me.  Because of his employee's mistake, I had to drive the two-hour round trip back to his shop, postpone my errands, waste an entire day troubleshooting, and suffer through a lot of unnecessary stress.

My husband showed up and both the shop owner and the mechanic explained to him what they did.  The shop owner apologized to him for us having to drive all the way out again.  Ultimately, it had a happy ending in that the problem did get fixed without any cost to us.  We were worried that we might have to sue the shop to pay for the bill that the dealership was going to slap us with. 

I made one more stop to look for a better anniversary gift and to pick up my office supplies.  I realized that I was making impulsive purchases because I was running out of time.  It was getting dark and I didn't want to have to make yet another trip into the city this week.  My calendar is pretty much booked up, so I had to finish my errands that evening.  I hate buying crap for gifts, but every year this happens to me -- something comes out of left field and I run out of shopping time, so I just grab anything off the shelf in order to avoid being empty-handed on our special day.  I thought this year would be different since I don't have an 80-hour a week job competing for my time, but I had no such luck.  I'm just as busy as I've ever been.

The bummer about them resetting the computer on my truck is that I lost all the work I did to preset radio stations and set the time on the dashboard.  I tried resetting the time while I was driving back home, but I couldn't get it to work.  I'm hoping I was just pushing the wrong buttons and that the clock isn't broken now.  Of course, it got dark before I could consult the manual, and I had to abandon the task in order to feed and blanket the horses.

I'm a bit freaked out because a friend told me that her father bought a brand new Dodge Ram truck and had so many things break on it within the first few months that he had to sue to get his money back using the Lemon Law.  That's not exactly something you want to hear after you bought one.  Of course, the airbag malfunction wasn't a fault with the truck, but a problem caused by someone not paying attention to where he was drilling.  I just hope this isn't the start of a long series of mishaps, because I will drive that truck off a cliff before I will allow some stupid material possession to suck up all of my time, energy and money.

Of course, having all of this insanity come right on the heels of the photo shoot mishap I wrote about in my last post didn't help.  Oh yeah, and did I tell you that the whole time I was driving all over Kingdom Come, my mobile phone kept ringing?  Different people were calling, but not leaving messages.  I couldn't pick up, because it's illegal to talk or text on a phone while driving now in Nevada, and I don't have a hands-free device, nor do I want one.  It's impossible to pull over when you are going 65 MPH and completely surrounded by traffic.  With my luck, they were potential clients calling for a portrait session, and since I didn't answer the phone, they called another photographer instead.  Everything has to happen all at the same time with me.  It just can't possibly be any other way.  If things don't settle down tomorrow, I might just have to disappear into the mountains for a day to collect my thoughts and learn how to breathe again.


Anonymous said...

you should document these things with the truck with a time, place and what they did, that way if you have to use the lemon law you will have complete records.

Reddunappy said...

Nuzz!! Take a deep breath!! At least it ended up not being a major fix with the truck!! Screw the damn dealership!! sheesh. Your husband sounds like a very patient man!
I am going to start turning my phone off when I drive, I can get voice mails later!!!
Sorry all that ruined your day.

Fantastyk Voyager said...

I feel your woes. Hang in there. It's GOTTA get better...someday...right?

Linda said...

Sheesh...that's pretty bad that they nicked your wires...on your new truck. I'm glad they fixed it for you and I hope it stays fixed.

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Yikes! What a huge hassle! I'm sorry this stuff keeps happening to you :(


Once Upon an Equine said...

Oey Vey! Murphy's Law has engulfed you. Sorry about the camera, computer, and truck problems. Hope the rest of your holidays are smooth sailing. Glad the dealership didn't take apart your truck just to look at the wiring. That sounds like overkill. That is very frustrating to have something go wrong on a brand new vehicle. Glad the accessory place was able to repair their mistake.

achieve1dream said...

Thank goodness they fixed it! I would have been so pissed. I hope everything chills out and gets better for you now.