Mr. Lime and I drive cars that are held together with bubble gum, coat hangers, and prayer. When it became apparent that Diana was going to need a vehicle for commuting a significant distance on a regular basis we found a nice, well-maintained 2003 Jetta because we did not relish the thought of her being stranded somewhere along the highway with one of our dying cars. The girl has the nicest car in the family. Even though hers is in the best condition I put her on our AAA PLUS plan. I have the plus plan because, as mentioned, Mr. Lime and I drive jalopies. I didn't figure Diana would have much need of AAA but she's inexperienced and it was cheap enough to add her.
In the last 2 1/2 weeks she has used it THREE times. Yes, I said three.
First we were jangled into consciousness one Sunday night/Monday morning by a series of hysterical phone calls spanning the hours of midnight to 2AM because Diana had gotten a flat tire on the New Jersey Turnpike. Once upon a time I was a mother of infants and young children. At that time my nervous system was wired to go from zero to 60 in under .001 of a second at the sound of a whimper coming through the baby monitor on the nightstand. All these years later my responses have slowed considerably. The first phone call was seriously disorienting and having served my time as a breastfeeding mother all those years ago, I handed the phone to Mr. Lime. He talked her through what to do. Since she had AAA PLUS she opted to have the tow truck schlep her car from New Jersey all the way back to central PA...apparently it came in just under the 100 mile limit or whatever it was.
The second use of services was necessitated this past Tuesday when she had her second flat tire on the twisting, hilly, no shoulder road close to our house. Since there was no safe place to pull off she opted to continue driving until she got to where the road forked and there was space. She called me during the busiest hour at my office. She had left her wallet at home so her license and AAA card were there. I was less than pleased by that entirely avoidable aspect to the problem. Nonetheless, I found a friend who could retrieve the card for her. She had the tire changed and went to repair it and was told the tire was shredded beyond repair. Ultimately the decision was made to just replace all four tires since the ones on the car were fairly new but not very good quality. Two flats in just over a week seemed to indicate more were on the way so I shelled out the moolah to simply replace all the tires even though it means repairs my car needs are going to wait. She was horrified by the total for the bill and said I should consider the tires her birthday and Christmas gifts this year. She also declared that cars suck because they are so expensive to fix. Whatever, given that the accident I had a year and a half ago was largely due to poorly worn tires I'd rather pay for tires than medical bills.
Cut to Saturday evening and the next automotive event. "Mom, I blew out a tire when I backed over a curb." I am breathing slowly and deliberately. I am counting to ten. I am frustrated. I am face palming as I tell her to call AAA and deal with it. She ought to know the drill by now...though I am considering taking the "nice" car and giving her one of the jalopies since we seem to have better luck with them.