Sigh, it’s never in your own driveway that car issues happen is it? No it’s usually a good town away when things go bang and on a day where you could fry an egg on the paintwork if you really had to..
It’s been a big day for the Dad Taxi
I dropped my wife off to lunch with a friend, took the kids to Maccas (aka McDonalds) and in between that helped the son of a family friend get to and from an umpiring appointment at a local basketball stadium. He was a last minute call up and for whatever reason they set him up in a motel 11 kilometres away from where he needed to be, possibly overlooking the fact that at 16 years old he’s not able to drive himself anywhere yet. (Not having a car of his own also adds to that little dilemma).
So I was asked very nicely by a good mate of mine if I could get him to the stadium and back and I happily agreed, they’re the kind of family who would down tools and come to my aid if I ever needed it so I was happy to help. What I wasn’t expecting (I know, I know – rookie mistake) was the challenge of drawing conversation out of a surly 16 year old while chewing through the kilometres.
Like attempting to squeeze blood out of a stone, our conversation amounted to a quick fire game show where I played host and he gave me nothing but one word answers.
‘How’s the family?’
‘How long have you been umpiring basketball for?’
‘When do you think these rising interest rates from the RBA are likely to calm down?’ Actually I didn’t ask him this one because I was sure the answer would also be just one word, namely ‘What?’
Now I know what Uber drivers must feel like when they get passengers who spent most of the journey silently staring at their phone. At least I don’t have to worry about the rating at the end of it though.
The gauge went up, my heart sank
It was the last corner before his motel and I couldn’t help but notice that the temperature gauge on my Slowbaru has decided it had become bored of being stuck in the middle of the dial where it’s supposed to be, and started to climb. So did my heart rate effectively because this is not a good sign at all and hasn’t been seen since I had the radiator fixed (so much for the last of that problem.) The last thing anyone wants is your engine cooking, especially in another town and when it’s a lovely roasting 35 degrees outside.
And so after dropping him off at the motel, I found the nearest shady park and shut things down before
a massive explosion ripped the town apart things got worse. Best guess, the overflow was full and there wasn’t enough of the green stuff circulating in the engine to cool things down.
Annnnd….I hate when I’m right. The overflow was close to full and bubbling away madly (a sign of head gasket issues) and with everything nice and hot, there’s little you can do apart from whistle a tune and go and do something else before things start to cool down again. And so I walked into the nearest shopping centre for a cool drink, sat on my bum and waited (because it’s too hot to go anywhere and all I want to do is go home) Meanwhile fate decided that wasn’t enough amusement for one day and started throwing in a few more moments for shits and giggles.
-A woman in her late teens had an argument with someone unseen in the nearby car park with enough fruity language to survive many months at sea. I don’t know who was copping the brunt of her ire but she certainly wasn’t happy and wanted him to know, the whole neighbourhood to know and practically anyone and everyone in Wodonga at the time because that’s how loud she was. Forget worrying about coolant levels in my car, I was now worried that her c bombs were of such a loud standard, my windows were under threat of shattering.
-One of those Utes big enough to park an entire Ute dealership in the back of decided that the best parking space was a few inches in front of me. I walked out of the supermarket to see an ocean of free spaces and the truck of death just about on my car’s nose. Why? Is this a superiority thing because my car is a good quarter smaller than this thing? Worse still was the leagues of shady space in front of the Ute, suggesting he reversed up that badly. Luckily I don’t take up much space meaning I didn’t have the lean over the side of my own car just to perform emergency surgery on it but still. (This isn’t the first time I’ve gone to fix this car and someone has decided the best place to park in a virtually empty carpark…is right next to me. I’m obviously a magnet for oversized utes, or at least my car is.)
-Completing the trifecta of fate attempting to keep me amused during slightly stressful situations, I had a tourist behind me in one of those hire vans. She was wandering around aimlessly in front of her van (and therefore behind my car) for some reason, possibly taking photos of it.
Or maybe she was taking pictures of my car instead? Obviously wherever she hails from has a supreme lack of spider infested Subaru’s with heating issues and she made the most of the sighting while she was there.
While I worked on my car, she sat in the van completely engrossed in something. Possibly the pics she took because my car does have a lot of spiderwebs on it currently..
Not my first breakdown rodeo
We’ve all had (or in my case have) those quirky car issues that only we know how to fix. Which is why I’m happy to report that I had everything on hand to get up and running again without the need to call for divine intervention or a tow truck.
The jacket over the still warm radiator cap ensured I didn’t scold myself with anything that made have come gushing out. The multi tool in the centre console (never leave home without it!) got the old cable tie off the overflow bottle to allow it to be poured back into the radiator. A small collection of spare cable ties (again, don’t leave home without them!) put the overflow bottle back in it’s place again. And before I knew it I was back home again and the gauge was back in the middle where it should have been.
Hooray for easy fixes!
After the fun, sorry, the frustration of this afternoon, my timeline in thinking of selling this thing has moved up. I was going to wait for the colder months but any more issues like this will convince me without a shadow of a doubt that it’s obviously haunted and needs to go.
So anyone want a 2005 Subaru Blob Eye Impreza? Comes with a magnet for oversized Utes and all the spiders you can eat..