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Coughing and Mufflers

October 18, 2009

I was driving home from Needham where I had just spoken to a smart and compassionate group at the Unitarian Universalist Meeting House in Needham (compassionate because they put up with my hoarse voice and my coughs and my need to chew gum and cough drops), when my car began to make a rumbling noise and then a roaring noise, or more precisely, a roaring kind of sound (This is how I described it to my mechanic on his voicemail). When it didn’t explode, I realized it was probably the muffler. Then I had a coughing fit, the kind where I couldn’t see and was worried that I was going to kill myself and others. I reminded myself that this was not the worst thing that has happened to me with this car and that although it felt like this was a new low in my travails, really it was only medium low. For example, there was the time when the car only blew cold air and it was minus seven degrees and my son and I were sick and I cried. Or, the time, the mechanic ordered me out of the car because it had no brakes and I had to rent a car in order to get to school in time to pick up my son. Besides, the muffler is probably my fault and so I feel guilty. I go racing over the speed bumps at Endicott and so this is probably retribution of some kind. The bright spot is remembering the terrific Needham group and the nice man who volunteered to go get my books from my car even though it was raining. I had left them there because I always feel stupid bringing them in for people to buy. Who has the money to buy hardbacks? I don’t. I am worried about finding the money for a new muffler. This nice man is also a Battlestar Galactica fan. And, he is writing about how the brain works. I would like to know how my brain works, so I hope he finishes his book soon.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. October 19, 2009 6:28 am

    I am enjoying your latest blog posts because they sound all crazy and random, which is how I feel too.

  2. October 20, 2009 6:59 pm

    Oh how I feel for you – car trouble is such a royal pain! Really, I decided to comment because I work for AAA and I just hope you had AAA or some kind of roadside service to come help you. Being stranded is not only frustrating and slightly scary, especially if you are alone at night, it can be expensive, time-consuming, and downright dangerous. I’m always glad when single women come in and sign up for AAA because there’s nobody more vulnerable than a woman alone on a dark road with a dead car! I had a scary experience some years ago when my son was just a kid and we were going to my parents’ house after a 4th of July fireworks show. We pulled onto an interstate and before I could even get up speed, the car died. Turns out it had a burned up something-or-other, which was bad, but before I found that out I had to live through the process of getting help. With no cell phone – it was pre-cell-phone days – I was at the mercy of anybody who would stop. When someone did, I was terrified until I looked in the car behind me and saw a female head and a child.

    He said he’d call a tow truck but none came – then another car stopped and I had to go through it all again – when I saw the Turnpike Authority patch on his shirt, I relaxed some. Then came the burly tow truck driver who, thank heavens, let us ride in the car instead of having to get in the tow truck with him. Then we got to the all-night station where all the “good ole boys” in the area hung out until all hours. A lone female with a small sleepy son got a lot of attention that I didn’t want. I had to wait for my brother, who was an EMT and on duty, to come and get us. An hour later, with my son asleep on my lap and hugging his baseball bat (clever huh?), he pulled up in the ambulance and when I asked him what took him so long, he replied, “We had just gotten the pizza when you called!”

    AAA would have been SOOO good!

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