June 17, 2006

Another episode of Travelin' with Tammi

You'll love this little story. Might not believe it, but it's true. It happened to me on the way home last night........

I started out the day leaving around 5:45am. I was bound and determined to buy an Ipass. Stopped three places - no luck. BUT, I got to work nice and early, no traffic. It was a very good day.

Left the office around 4:20. Here is where it gets interesting.

Friday evenings the traffic from Chicago to Wisconsin is legendary. I managed to miss the worst of it. Making great time. Very happy. Stopped at my favorite plaza for a Diet Coke and got back on the road. I was making record time.

I saw that one of the plaza's was selling the pass until 7:00. Ha. I stopped and got one. Success!! This will save me around $85 a month in tolls. A very wise investment. I noticed when I took off the car was running funny. Maggie May has been very tired lately, and I plan on getting some work done. Just not yet. I need money for that. So I said a prayer and kept going.

Just east of Rockford a car pulls up beside me. The guy tells me I have a flat tire.

Not good. Not good at all.

I pull over and take a look. Sure enough - there is a pancake where my rear driver's side tire should be.

Son of a bitch.

I pop the trunk. I unload the trunk. You see the trunk is full of suitcases, clocks, pillows.....stuff. Lots of stuff. I pile everything on the side of the road. And discover - YEAH! I have a jack. YEAH YEAH I have a spare tire. Oh, and look directions on how to change a tire. Good thing, as I'd never done it before.

So I actually read the directions and remember thinking "How hard can this be, anyway?"

I tried to remove the lugnuts. They won't budge. I'm a strong girl. Lifting wise. BUT I have carpal tunnel, bad....I don't have the hand strength to loosen the nuts.

As I'm standing at the trunk I say a little prayer. Lord, I can't do this. I have no phone, no help. Please.....

All of a sudden this voice says "Ma'am? Can I help?" I must have jumped 10 feet.

There is a man standing there. A big man. He apologizes for scarin' me and asks again if he can help.

He gets the jack in place, and loosens the nuts. Presto chango Oh, spare tire in place.

The bad news? The spare was flat.
The good news? He had one of the handy dandy air thingys and pumps that bad boy up.

He then comments that he'll follow me to Walmart to make sure they patch it and everything is ok. Seems I picked up a nail. Lucky for me the rim was ok.

We get to Walmart at 7:10. They close at 7:00. They send me to Discount Tire. They close at 6:00. THEY send me to.....Pep Boys.

We get to Pep Boys and they look at the tire. Now, I have to say the guys there were wonderful. However, when they were checking the tire out we realize - it's not fixable. I need a new tire.

But wait. That's a Pep Boys tire. But the questions are:
1) Did I have the warrenty?
2) Where did I buy it?

My paperwork is all in a file box in the storage unit. So I start naming Pep Boys that have worked on my car. Finally, after looking in Tampa, Orlando, Macon and South Bend I remember Bradenton. Bingo. Yes - that's where I bought them and the tire is covered!!!


Presto - new tire on. I get to the register and my new best friend had paid.

For everything.

Yes. I cried.

So - there are heros in this world. I met one last night. His name is Calvin. He's a retired Navy guy from Texas via South Carolina. He's a traveling mechanic.

All he said was to be sure and "pay it forward".

I will.

Yes, I will - as soon as I can.

It was a hell of a trip home - don't you think?

Posted by Tammi at June 17, 2006 10:21 AM | TrackBack

See, there are angels!

And no, T1G I ain't talking about you.

Posted by: Quality Weenie at June 17, 2006 10:25 AM

Wow. Just wow... :)

Posted by: Richmond at June 17, 2006 11:43 AM

No, I think that was a heaven of a trip home. I give thanks he was there for you, is there in the world, and for all like him. Would that there were more.

Posted by: Laughing Wolf at June 17, 2006 04:13 PM

I see that your Daddy sent you an angel to make sure his angel was going to be okay. So glad that you got to receive that gift.

And DH says the next time you're down here, he'll teach you a trick to be able to get the lugnuts off, in case an angel is otherwise engaged.

Sending you big hugs! I know you'll pay it forward.

Love you sweetheart! Big hugs!

Posted by: Lee Ann at June 17, 2006 08:49 PM

Yeah, you do have a great attitude.
I know so many people (whom I need to "unload" from my life) who would have done nothing but complain for days about how awful the experience was - ignoring any positives.

You may live an "interesting" life, but you sure are a blessed woman.

Posted by: _Jon at June 17, 2006 09:20 PM

Wow, I'm impressed. God sent you an angel in record time!

Seriously, I'm really glad he's watching over you! It helps us not worry so much.

Posted by: michele at June 17, 2006 09:46 PM

Hooray for him!!!!

Now seriously....didn't you learn anything from my experience???

Posted by: Carmen at June 19, 2006 02:18 PM

Angels, Heros... there is a fine line. I'm so glad God sent someone to help you, and that you didnt' loose Faith. I know if it were not for all the truck drivers on the way to Mississippi from NY I probably would not have made it. Not an issue of directions, but at truck stopps bein' so tired (7m pregers), and havin' a three yearold it was so hard. And they played with Indiana and talk with me it was a great thing. God Bless all those heros who are our angels.

Posted by: Emily at June 20, 2006 12:07 PM
Post a comment

Remember personal info?