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Friday, December 19, 2008

Sometimes, having a junker car is a good thing...

What a day we had today!

It's turned out to be day when I not only got to really appreciate my kids, but am appreciating that we have a $50 car. *L*

As the girls and I entered the parkade to head out for the day, there were some people going through their car parked closer to the door than our spot. Seeing us come in, the gentleman called out, "did your car get broken into, too?" !?!?! When I said I had no idea - we hadn't seen our car yet - he told me that quite a few had been broken into. My husband found out later that the total number had been six.

Our own car was untouched. It's not exactly the sort of car that would be targeted as having anything of value. With it's "character" marks on the outside, the chopped up dash board cover (the vinyl cover had come unglued and curled up, blocking the car's ability to defog the windshield, so Dh just cut the curled up part off. It looks weird, but it works. *L*), missing gas cap cover, and so on... About the only thing we'd have to worry about is if we parked on the street and someone stole it for a joy ride. The thing isn't even worth stealing for parts. *L*

One of the things we did today was meet my husband for lunch at a Boston Pizza near his work. We won't be going there again. We're fairly regular there - maybe once a month, though we've found ourselves there twice in one day in the past. We're there often enough for some of the wait staff to know us. They certainly aren't the problem. The problem is in the kitchen. Today was at least the third time they've screwed something up. A past example was when we decided to have a couple of deserts. After the waitress went into the kitchen twice to get them for us, she ended up having to plate them herself, because the kitchen staff never got around to it. Dh was late getting back to work because of that.

Today's screw up was with a quesidilla (not sure how to spell that) we ordered to share. We specifically asked for no tomato. I can tolerate tomatoes if they're in a sauce or paste, but that's it. I've tried to eat them but ... well, let's just say my gag reflex works really well at times. When we asked for no tomatoes, the waitress made note of it, saying it was an allergy, just to make sure they'd pay attention to it in the kitchen. When the quesidilla gets to the table, I take a peek, just in case. Sure enough, it had chopped bits of tomato spread all over. I couldn't even pick them off.

When the waitress came back, she was surprised when we told her there were tomatoes in there, since she'd been VERY clear when she wrote down our order. I even watched her to it, too. She offered to take it back, but since it was just me that was effected by it, and this was more of an appetizer for the 4 of us, I said I was ok with it. I really didn't want the extra time added on, since we did have to get my husband back to work. I should have accepted her offer, though. Eldest tried some and didn't like it. Youngest doesn't like tomatoes. I thought she was ok with them. Oops. That left Dh being the only person who could eat it.

When it came time for the bill, the waitress told us she'd talked to the manager on our behalf and that he said not to charge us for the quesidilla, which we thought was nice of her. As we left, Youngest and I headed to the car to warm it up (and get the windows clear of snow) while Dh and Eldest waited in line to pay for our meal. It took them a lot longer than I expected. Sure enough, Dh asked for the manager and had a talk with him. He simply told the manager that we weren't coming back. He made it very clear that we had no problems with the wait staff, just their kitchen staff. The manager started to make offers to placate my husband, but Dh told him he wasn't after anything. No discounts or whatever are wanted. We're just not coming back. I doubt the manager is too happy with his kitchen staff right now.

The hard part is going to be finding an alternative place to meet Dh for lunch that isn't fast food, is relatively inexpensive, and close to Dh's work.

After dropping Dh off at work and doing a bit more running around, the girls and I headed home. I didn't stay long, though, heading out again to do more running around. The last place I needed to go to was back downtown - just up the block from the BP, actually. LOL

Now, the weather today hasn't been the best. It was fairly cold with a light snow pretty much all day. That made for some messy roads. Not icy - it was too cold for any melt on the roads - but with plenty of dirty ridges of loose snow in between the tire tracks. The plow trucks are out, but they just can't keep up with an all day snow. Rush hour was just starting as I headed into downtown, too, so traffic was pretty heavy. I get to an intersection where I needed to make a left turn. It had a turning lane and an advance green arrow. I was several cars back from the intersection, and the vehicle ahead of me went through even though the arrow had turned yellow. By the time I got to the intersection, the green arrow was gone. Facing traffic now had the right of way. So I stopped.

The car behind me didn't.

Yup, I got rear ended.

I had to pull a bit forward, into the cross walk, to give some space between our vehicles since the driver behind me made no effort to back up. I doubt he could have given me more than a couple of inches anyway, with vehicles close behind him. I then turned on my hazard lights and get out of the car to see the damage. Only when I get to my own bumper does he get out to take a look, too. His bumper has a few scratches on it. Mine's cracked and caved in. Mentally, I'm thinking... it's a $50 car. We really don't care too much. Still, the damage is enough that if we did fix it, the entire bumper will need to be replaced.

At that point, the guy gets to me, starts looking at his bumper and mumbles something about the damage not being too bad. I point out that *my* bumper is damaged quite a bit - enough to need replacing. We're going to have to exchange our driver's license information. Then he starts to shift the blame onto me by saying that I'd stopped. Well, all thoughts of letting it slide disappear as I point out that of course I stopped - I no longer had the light! Then he scuffs at the road surface and says something about the conditions, and how his car just kept going. I didn't bother pointing out that the road surface he was scuffing wasn't slippery at all. I just went into my car and found something to write our information on. As I went past him to get his license plate number, I asked him if he had something to write on (hint, hint). He says yes and goes into his own car. By the time I'm done, he's writing down my license plate number, too.

I should point out that he wasn't at all belligerent or aggressive or anything like that. He just seemed to *really* want to act like nothing happened, and unsure of what to do. Which turned out to be very accurate. As I bring out my own driver's license so he can get my information (then he starts digging for his), he starts asking why we're doing this. Is it for the police? I told him that no, it was for the insurance company. So what happens next? he wonders. He's never been in an accident before. I have no idea. I've never been rear ended before. Well, not quite true. I did get a bump once, many years ago. That one didn't even result in a scratch, so I've never had to do paperwork for this sort of thing before. All I know is that we call our insurance companies and it goes on from there.

To be honest, I'm not sure I'm going to bother. As far as I know, because I was rear ended and it was clearly his fault, my insurance won't be effected, but his will. The thing is, I have no interest in getting it fixed. Why bother? My deductible is probably higher than the car is worth. The damage is to one corner of the bumper on the driver's side. I still have a functional bumper - as long as I don't get hit in that same spot again. To be even more honest though, the biggest reason I have to report this is the other driver's behaviour. I mean really - trying to shift the blame to me for stopping when I didn't have the light? Along with the whole "it's not that bad" commentary when he's only got a few scratches and I've got a crunched in hole in my bumper? I don't think so, Buddy!

I don't know. I'll have to think about it for a bit longer.

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