Ok, I drive a lot. A. LOT.
I know this.
And I’ve put a lot of miles on my car in the last year and a half. Fine. I’m ok with that.
But, I’m 2,610 miles past the 50,000 mile warranty (yes, terrible, I know) and in the last two weeks, I’ve dropped $400+ on stupid things for my 2009 Saturn Vue.
I mean, really, the ABS and traction control randomly quit working at 50,179 miles?? The outside temperature gauge went berserk this morning and, on a February Michigan morning my car insisted that it was 95 degrees outside.
It got more interesting when the inside temperature controls, when I turned them to 85, blew hot air (good thing). But, if I turned it one click back from 85, then it was air conditioning like it really WAS 95 degrees outside or something and I needed to be cooled off (for the record, I didn’t).
At this point I had already woke up at 5:15 a.m., gotten ready to head to Indianapolis for the day, had Jon call from the road to say to wait til the sun was up to hit the road because the roads were so crappy, then waited, hit the road at 7:15 a.m., only to STOP on I-69 heading towards Indy, about a half hour from home. At which point, my Mom called.
“Do you know why you’re stopped on 69 right now?” she asked.
“They shut down the expressway because there are so many accidents to clean up.”
Ok. Sweet. That explained why EVERYONE except the big trucks were taking the on-ramp as an off-ramp and getting off the expressway. So, I opted for my life instead of braving the roadways along 69 (notoriously crappy during days like these) and headed toward home with FREEZING or HOT-HOT my only options.
Called Suski’s and headed in there to get the egg fixed.
I sat there patiently for the first hour. Then I had a conference call I needed to be on. So, the female worker brought me my computer bag (“Man, that thing is HEAVY” she said. I did NOT respond: “Yes, I’m terribly important.” or something else snide). And, thankfully Suski had free wifi and I worked for the next three hours. Yes, I sat in the dealership’s ‘customer lounge’ for four hours.
Want to know what I encountered while I was there??
Well, to start, a woman who has to smoke a pack of cigarettes a day and is a waitress at the Cracker Barrel on Pierson Rd. She carried on and on with some other random woman about how she hated all food, especially Cracker Barrel food, and how she didn’t like Mexican, so she wouldn’t be frequenting the new local restaurant that was Mexican. And she hates Chinese. The man, the infant in the car seat with him, and the two teenage boys with him seemed to appreciate this conversation as much as me.
Suddenly, the CBW (Cracker Barrel Waitress) turned to the man with the infant and said ‘Your son?’ ‘No,’ he responded.
The CBW then proceeded to say that she wouldn’t be able to foster, she’d get too attached, etc. This, as the man told her how the one teen boy was his son and the other was a foster child.
I couldn’t help but be fascinated by the infant. Of course I am. It’s literally in my blood right now. BUT — this infant was 10 months old and still in one of those infant car carriers. Maybe that’s the rule, but this little guy (Wyatt, I found out) definitely no longer fit in that carrier.
He was awfully cute. And good. He just sat there. He got fussy at one point and the foster dad gave him some sort of food-bottle thing. That kept him quiet for awhile. Then, he needed a diaper change. Ok. Well, then it was finally time for the foster dad to go learn what they’d done to his car and pay for it. He says to his son, “Watch Wyatt” (which is how I learned the baby’s name was Wyatt).
No, as an aside, I was wondering what this man was doing fostering kids. He didn’t seem overly loving, but I guess that’s awfully hard to tell while sitting in the customer lounge at Suski’s. I kept waffling between ‘wow, this guy and his family are really doing something great in the world’ to ‘he doesn’t SEEM like he takes any pride or joy in the role he plays in these children’s lives — is he in it for the money’ (is there even money to be had in fostering or just tax write-offs?). Ok, back to my story.
Well, the son is about 17 or so. An awkward, acne-marked teen who is caught up in his iPod touch and some other video game thing. The baby is in the carrier (from which he hasn’t been removed in the hour+ we’ve all been sitting there) and the foster dad is now out of the room. 17 is now in charge. Wyatt starts fussing. And 17 says ‘Oh, Wyatt’ and that’s it. The baby continues to fuss, continues to cry.
I could NOT handle it.
The carrier was facing away from me, and the baby kept leaning around and stretching to look at me (I tell you, it’s in the blood). So, in my sweetest baby voice, I just went over and turned him around so he could face me. I didn’t move him close to me (though I wanted to) but I just talked to him. It had to be a good 15 minutes or so. The son and the foster son didn’t give it a second thought. But this little guy was SO cute. And had such a sweet disposition. And they just seemed to have ignored him while he was there that whole time. I’m sure it’s not the case when he’s home (wait, no, I’m not sure).
Anyway, that was my afternoon. I was trying to work and be on calls, all the time feeling as though this little guy wasn’t being given the attention he should have.
Who am I to say. I’ll be judged as a mother, that’s inevitable. But, as I sat there I truly couldn’t imagine as a mother having my child taken away (the case here) to be fostered because I couldn’t keep it together. But, it sounds like Wyatt’s mom is trying hard and is doing everything right to get him back.
I hope so. He seemed like such a nice boy with a bad stack of cards staring him down.
In the meantime, it was four hours, a $7 part from Flint and $89 in labor to fix my car. Again.
At least it’s no longer freezing me out. That damn car.