Monday, June 28, 2004
It was only an accident
Cut to the chase, Jacob has graduated to the next room so he is away from Alexis for now. Fewer fights, less biting. Good stuff. Then Joyce Calls, with bad news. Jacob had drank a lot of water and threw up again. Argh. Not good, poor guy must have something sour in his stomach. He will become dehydrated if this keeps up. I let her know that day-care should call me and I'll go get him if this trend continues. We may have to bring him in to the Pediatrician's office. So much for getting the additional wood for phase III. Best laid plans of men and ... daddy. I resign myself to having a long and difficult week, but the day had just begun. Things were going to get worse.
Joyce calls again a few moments later. Not good, something is either wrong or she will is intending on doing some early morning shopping. Either way, I need to break from work and find a quiet corner to talk. Then she lowers the boom. "I was just in a car accident." What? "I hit a car, what do I do?" Oh no, I'm stunned. A whirl of things flash through my head, but I manage to sputter "Is everyone ... are you ok?". She replies "I dont know, my arm is banged up, I haven't seen the other driver." I tell her to call 911 and call me back. I compose myself for a couple minutes and call her back. The police have already arrived by that time and she is relaying details to them. I find out that the car is un-drivable and will need to be towed. I let her know Im on my way and I will arrange for a tow to someplace that can fix the car. Probably a Ford dealship like C&C or Kennedy. I let my boss know that I HAVE to leave and I dont know if I'm coming back. I rush out the door and start going through my PDA looking for numbers and pulling assorted details about the Taurus. DAMN. It was a 96 and it only had about 85K miles on it. I learn later that the air-bags have deployed and I worry about her ribs. I know after a bang-up like that, you don't usually feel the hurt till long after. I spend quite a bit of time on the phone with the insurance company scheduling a tow and submitting the claim. It takes a while because I'm trying to do this while rolling down the turnpike at the tail end of rush-hour traffic. Its 8:15 on Monday so there is little love or tolerance going around. I eventually get the claim and the tow ironed out and notice that I have 2 missed calls on my phone. I promptly call Joyce knowing that one of the calls came from her. Is she on the way to the hospital? No, she is at the police station and they towed away the cars from the accident site! Oh no, my tow is going to a place where there is no car and the adjuster is going to a place where there will be no car. Damn efficient Warminister police! I now have to find out where the police station is and then find where the car ended up. On top of that, the other driver insisted on being taken to the hospital in an ambulance because of whip-lash. I smell a lawsuit in the making. I eventually wind my way through the congested back-roads to find the battered Mrs MDMHVONPA standing among infant seats and other assorted possessions disgorged from her crippled conveyance. She is busily yammering away on the phone, trying to get directions to the final resting place of her beloved car. Her first car, the car I bought for her in 1996 before she even had a permit. I load my tiny little saturn with all her vehicular possessions and we get under-way to the tow-yard. It is in Ivyland somewhere and the directions we have been given are dubious.
After missing the turn twice and having to fight our way through a road-closure, we eventually find Max Million and Sons at about 9:15am. We go in and they tell us that the car is out back, but they think it is totaled? What? Totaled, how? Did you drop it off a cliff? No, its because the air-bags went off and they will cost about 2K each to remove and replace. The car, if it was not in an accident would have been worth 3K per the blue-book. The repairs will be 8K. Windshield, dash, steering column, hood, fenders, front end, radiator ... its a complete mess. We solemnly empty the car and as a final act, I remove the plate from the car. I can tell that the Mrs is near tears. She really loved that car. I like it a lot because it was easy to change the oil and filters. The filter can be reached right in front, the oil pan is right there ... and now I have a stack of filters that I no longer have a use for. I cannot even use them on the saturn or the mini-van. As we drive off towards home, I let the Mrs know that it will all be ok. That in the end, she can have my car, she could drive the mini-van or if we have enough spare cash, we could get a used car with less than 10K miles on it. She has never been comfortable in any car but her Taurus and I don't think we could afford to rent a car. She will need to use the mini-van till we make a decision. The Insurance company will probably total the car and give us a 2K check ( after tax and deductibles). After replacing the tires on the car 6 months ago, it will be of little consolation. We will now have 2 car loans, a mortgage and the expense of daycare all at the same time. Lovely. We will persevere. We must, because we have a birthday coming up! Its going to be a very long week, and the Mrs will need a bit of support to get through it.