01 July 2008

Why I'll Never Doubt There's A Higher Power

I believe everything happens for a reason. This is no doubt fostered by my mother's belief in "The Spirit." When I was younger, my mom would tell me things she knew because of what the "The Spirit" told her. Usually it meant my brother was up to no good and eventually I translated it to mean my mom simply followed her gut. But more evidence is showing me she was right, today is one of those examples.

Jesse and I are going camping for the 4th of July. I'm really excited. We took a lot of road trips when we lived in Fargo -- going anywhere from the rope swing in Elizabeth to concerts in Chicago. We drove 26 hours to get to Las Vegas, and we've been off the open road pretty much ever since, going only as far as Cedar City earlier this year. I miss it, gas prices aside. I also miss water, trees, and moisture in the air. These are all things I plan to rectify with camping. Today that trip was endangered -- then aided -- by a higher power.

Before I travel, I like to make sure everything is on the up and up. That means a clean apartment and inspected car. Today I called Hyundai for my 15,000 service and was told there were no openings until Saturday. Too bad for them I'll be in Southern Utah on Saturday. I was resigned to start our trip with faith in Hyundai.

Jesse picked me up from work and we headed home. Two blocks from home we stopped to eat. The gas station on the corner happens to be attached to a Mexican restaurant. If you don't have one of those in your neighborhood, you should get one. We ate and when we were done, my car would not start. The key turned, the air turned on, the lights came on, and the radio played. But the engine would not start. Jesse tried some things while I called roadside assistance. It was exactly 6:00 and I had exactly 16,000 miles on my car. I was promised a tow truck within the hour. Jesse and I were in the best place we could be at a less than favorable time.

We were two blocks from home, and even though it was 110 degrees outside, I didn't think the walk home was bad at all. We hydrated, got a deck of cards and walked back to await the tow truck. Jesse tried the car two more times, and it started. I canceled the truck and drove right to the dealership. Since I had an emergency, I felt no issue in squeezing my way into the mix. The maintenance guy agreed to check my battery... and reminded me I was due for my 15,000 mile service. I pounced on the opportunity. The service included an oil change, filter changes, fluid checks, plug checks, a belt check, tire checks, and brake checks. Basically everything a girl about to embark on a road trip would need.

In summation, within four hours, I went from approaching a road trip with a blind view of my car, to not having the car at all, to a fully checked (and washed) vehicle. If my car hadn't-not started, I wouldn't have gotten in to get the service. We would have taken it into the wilderness without a clean bill of health for who knows what. Instead, I have full faith in my vehicle, and am that much more excited.

And Just Awesome:
Between getting the car running and stopping at Hyundai, we pulled into a Starbucks. I ordered an iced coffee and Jesse ordered a water. When we got to the window, there was a sign reading: "How many calories are in a plain cup of coffee? Answer = a free drink." Jesse handed the barista the money as I asked: "Are there 5 calories in a plain cup of coffee?" She said: "There are. You can take your money back." Sometimes I amaze myself. Other times I just like to amaze you.