Sunday, 7 February 2016
Living an Episode of Top Gear by Mandy Baker Johnson
'It'll be fine,' I said.
Ahem. Maybe I wasn't exuding the gift of discernment at that precise moment.
It all started so well. Adi suggested going out for a meal before mooching round Ikea to buy candles (you can never have too many) and a new bathroom mirror (ours fell apart with a crash a few days ago).
I did a little dance of joy. We had ourselves a date!
Not two minutes out of the house and the car battery light came on. 'Uh oh,' said Adi, pulling over.
'Oh just switch it off and on again,' I advised.
We sped down the dual-carriageway, the big blue and yellow Ikea sign luring us on. At the junction, lots of little red lights flashed up on the dashboard and the speedo went crazy. The steering went as we entered the car park and then the car died. Even the hazard lights refused to work. It was like being in one of those Top Gear challenges where they buy old cars that break down all over the place.
We shivered in the wind and rain waiting for the nice RAC man to come and rescue us. Why do break downs never happen in summer? Why is it always dark and rainy and cold?
Most drivers pulled round our silent, unlit car. A couple hooted their horns (did they think we were doing this for the fun of it?). A white van man offered to help push us to a better spot, but the car refused to budge. We did discover it needs washing though. Badly, if my hands were anything to go by.
I raced off with Adi's wallet to Starbuck's to keep us supplied with lattes and hot chocolate, and to Ikea for hot dogs (so all wasn't lost, we did get our hot dogs).
The RAC man arrived and fiddled under the bonnet for a while (something to do with the alternator). He recharged the battery and followed us to a garage.
I take my hat off to Adi - driving with side lights only, very intermittent wind screen wipers, and both windows open wide letting in rain and wind to keep the windscreen from misting up.
The car died in some road works and the RAC man again fiddled under the bonnet before we were able to limp to the garage. Only to find security bollards up preventing us entering the forecourt.
We finally found somewhere nearby to dump the car before it died yet again and the nice RAC man dropped us off home.
It wasn't the date evening we'd planned. But on the plus side, I got a blog post out of it!
Mandy Baker Johnson is a self-employed medical secretary who enjoys blogging and is working on an autobiographical book about deliverance from darkness and being healed from cerebellar ataxia and ME/chronic fatigue. She enjoys volunteering with a Christian charity working with women in the sex industry.