Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Our Day

Busy, busy day today.

It actually began yesterday afternoon when Jess went online to order a set of tires for her Yaris. (Called “Bob” as in the dread Pirate Roberts. Arrrggghhh! = Yar(is). Get it? She went to the Pep Boys web site since their prices are good and their Cartert, NJ store was nearby to 1) Linden, NJ and 2) the DMV Inspection Station. We thought the ordering process went well and Jess had a confirmation that they had four tires of the size their step-by-step guide recommended. (Jess was unable to schedule the needed oil change, however, because of an issue with the program.)

At 8:00AM we showed up, changed the work order to include the oil change and waited. They Brought Bob in, put him on the lift, pulled all four tires, and took the rubber off the rims. Oil was changed. An hour after they started, one of the mechanics came out, talked to the clerk, and then the clerk came to us to say the tires their computer recommended were the wrong sized. Bob, whom we purchased used five years ago, had had an upgrade in his style package when he was first manufactured. His tires were just t-h-i-s much bigger than standard. They would cost about $5 more but not to worry, they had them in stock. (An hour later we would learn that this was a lie. They had THREE of them in stock. The fourth was in Edison. But they didn’t send anyone for that tire until they had put the other three on. It took them almost an hour to get that fourth tire.) We finally got Bob out of Pep Boys around 11 AM.

Then it was off to the DMV for an inspection. It was only SEVEN months past due. Luckily, they had four lines open and only three vehicles in each.One lane was for “Heavy Duty” vehicles and the van directly ahead of us was directed to that lane. We figured little Bob would be headed to one of the other lanes but were surprised that he was directed to follow the van. No matter. We pulled up, exited Bob and walked over to the waiting area. Just 15 minutes later we were called over as the inspector was putting on a new sticker and waving us on our way.

Jess, Bob and I went back to Linden where Terry had loaded the Tundra with our belongings. A quick stop to fill the coffee cups and all of us were heading to Springfield to Auto Land and the Toyota dealer. The plan was to pay off the balance of the loan that allowed Jess to purchase Bob. That was the plan. *sigh* However….

We learned that you cannot pay off loans AT the dealership. You have to either mail a check to Toyota Financial or pay the balance over the phone with either a debit card (NOT a credit card) or automatic withdrawal from your checking account. We could have done THAT while waiting for the new tires! DOH!
Anyway, we got the loan paid off in about 10 minutes of talking to a real live person on the phone.  Bob now had new tires, new oil and filter, a valid inspection sticker, and he was emancipated! (Payment confirmation will be mailed today. Title will be mailed in 7-10 days.)

Jess went off to get lunch before reporting to work. Terry and I headed west on I-80 to the Aerie into the midst of a bear of a snow storm. It was about 12:20 PM.

Before we got out of New Jersey, we ran into snowflakes falling down. By the time we reached Tannersville, PA it was snowing pretty hard. As we went up the hill on I-80 on to the Pocono Plateau, it was accumulating. By the time we reached Bloomsburg, it was pretty slick and cars were either ending up in the ditch or bouncing off one another. We pushed on, however.

We exited I-80 for I-180 and Williamsport. Sections of this route had 3-4 inches of snow and may have seen a plow. Nearer Williamsport, the road may have heard of a snow plow. And it got worse as we went north on Route 15. I turned on the 4-wheel HI drive on the Tundra and we crept northward at 30-40 mph.

We got onto Route 6 in Mansfield and headed east to the Aerie. Route 6 had heard rumors of a snow plow. We turned south off Route 6 onto the paved road heading toward Armenia mountain. This and the dirt road heading up the hill to the Aerie had no idea what a snow plow was. And the snow was now over 6 inches in depth. I switched to 4 wheel drive LO and we ground up the hill at about 15 mph…but up the hill we went. And into the driveway of the Aerie and right up to the front door where snow blown off the garage and house roof and piled to a depth of 8-9 inches.

It was 6:30 PM.  Normally, the trip would take 4 to 4-1/2 hours. This afternoon it took a tad over 6 hours. But we’re home. It’s a great deal easier to dig out from inside--where the tractor and snow thrower are located--than it is to do from the outside-where there’s not even any place to park.

And so went our day. How was yours?

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