Saturday, September 26, 2009

Oh So Close....

My car broke down. I was driving back from a client appointment, which is sooooo much better than having it happen driving to a client appointment, when the check engine light came on. At first I thought it was odd, because it looks exactly like the low-fuel light (which is almost always on, for some reason which may or may not be related to my penchant for trying to eek out just one...or two more trips before fueling) and I had a quarter of a tank of gas. Then I realized with a shock just what it was.

I was on Route 581, which for those of you in the know is most decidedly NOT the place to break down. If the trucks barreling through the region don't run you over, the cars will pick you off sniper-style. I was fortunate to be arriving into Harrisburg when it happened, so I pulled off the exit, into an apartment complex, turned off the car and watched in horror as steam billowed from the car in a mushroom cloud with a noticeable antifreeze/coolant odor. Something was clearly, terribly wrong.

I called Mrs Fish and told her what was going on, and that I was going to walk into town and get some coolant, then try to nurse it to the service station. I found a Rite Aid about half a mile away that had coolant, and bought two bottles, then hiked back to my car...those bottles are heavy, for the record. I let the car cool down, then poured the coolant in.

I made it to the repair place after two more stops to let then engine cool down, then adding more coolant. In short, it was an overall unpleasant experience, but prayers and my trusty Honda saw me through. My goal was to get a quarter-of-a-million miles out of the Honda. I pulled into the station at 249,089. Oh so close...I knew I was facing decision-time if the bill was high, and given the nature of what was going on, it looked pretty bad. And smelled pretty bad, too.

The Repair place called me the next day. A hose had broken and the repair bill was going to be....less than $300! Done and DONE! We're back in business and looking to clear 250,000 miles by next month. ROCK ON!

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