Old Cars

My car broke down on my way home last night. I had been planning on taking it in to the mechanic to get an oil change today and to mention something that I’d been feeling while driving it yesterday and the day before. It kind of felt like maybe it would stall but not really. I wasn’t too worried but I like to take it in sooner rather than later when I feel something unusual. I don’t want to get stranded somewhere. But I guess my car had other plans. I was driving up a hill when it just started slowing down. I pulled over to the side of the road and it ended up stopping right in front of someone’s driveway. I was on a somewhat busy road about 4km from home and it was 8:45pm. Thankfully my dad buys my sister and I a roadside assistance membership for Christmas every year. Most of the time I think that it’s just a waste of money because I’ve never needed to use it. But I guess it’s times like last night that make it worth it. So I made the phone call and was told that they’d be there in less than an hour. I then proceeded to text some of my friends and update my facebook status. What else do you do when you’re stalled on the side of the road in 2013? I was hoping that no one would hit me. I had my hazards on but I still worry about people not noticing and not paying attention. I only got honked at once and I’m pretty sure it was someone that probably scared themselves a little because they weren’t paying enough attention. I was trying not to look in my rearview mirror because I didn’t want to know if something was going to hit me. I considered just standing on the side of the road but the traffic wasn’t too busy at that time of night so I thought that I’d be ok in my car. Plus it was warmer in there. While waiting one of the friends that I had texted offered to come pick me up and drive me home. I had planned on walking since it was only 4k. My car would be going in the opposite direction to the mechanic shop so the tow truck couldn’t take me home. But I decided that if I accepted the ride I could take my gym bag and my groceries instead of just my groceries. The tow truck driver was concerned about leaving me on the side of the road to wait for my friend. I wasn’t worried but I accepted a ride up to the next main intersection where there was a gas station. This made it easier for my friend to find me as well. While the experience isn’t something that I enjoy going through I found myself thinking very positively about it all. It was a reminder of how nice, considerate and caring people can be. I appreciated that the tow truck driver was concerned for my safety and wanted to make sure that he left me in a public place where I wasn’t likely to be harmed. I was very thankful for my friend and her willingness to take the time to go out of her way to come get me and take me home. I even liked the fact that the gas station attendant (who was very chatty on Friday when I stopped for gas) came over and questioned me on why I was standing at the gas station with all my stuff. It’s nice to have people show care and concern and do kind things. I was also thankful for little things like the fact that it wasn’t raining and that it wasn’t as cold or windy as it has been recently. I was thankful that I wasn’t in one of the other two cities that I’d been in earlier in the day. I was thankful that it didn’t stall on the freeway or in the area where I was volunteering, with drug addicts and homeless people, just an hour earlier. It could have been much worse. My only fear was that it was going to cost me a fortune or that I would need to get a new car. I was worried that I would cry today when the mechanic told me what was wrong. My friend helped me to expect the cost to be a lot so that I would be surprised and happy when it was less than I was expecting. It actually worked. We decided that $500-600 was a good amount to expect. It ended up being $430 with my oil change. Still a lot of money for someone without a job but I didn’t cry. $430 is also a lot cheaper than getting a new car. The problem was the igniter coil. I’ve never had an igniter coil go on a car before. No wonder I had no idea what was wrong with it. I’m glad that it’s fixed now and hopefully it’ll continue running at least until I get a decent job.
I tried out Zumba yesterday for the first time. I don’t like dancing so I’ve never bothered trying it before now. I always felt like I should at least give it a chance so when my mom mentioned that she was going to do it with my sister I decided that I would go too. My sister does it regularly and loves it. She’s even considering starting to teach it if she can find the time. My mom enjoyed it. She also likes dancing. I don’t need to try it again. I don’t like moving my hips. I also didn’t find it to be that great of a workout. I realize that learning a new class is never as good of a workout as when you know all the moves but it still didn’t seem like it would be that hard. The sides of my calves are sore but I knew that they would be. Any time that I do anything like a jumping jack it hurts the sides of my calves. I should probably try to do something about that. At least now I can say that I’ve tried Zumba and I don’t have to do it again.
After Zumba yesterday I went for a 5k run by my sister’s house. Then my mom and I walked to my nephew’s school (with his bike) to pick him up while my sister went to an appointment. I then stayed with my nephew while my mom picked up my niece. I had brought his birthday present with me so he opened it when he got home. I bought him Lego. He immediately started to build the helicopter. He was so fast at putting it together. I couldn’t have done it that fast. I really enjoyed just sitting there and talking to him while he was busy. He often needs time to himself after school. He can get a little grumpy at times and he gets annoyed when things don’t go just right. I think riding his bike home from school and then putting the Lego together was a good combo for him. He told me about his day at school and about his birthday weekend and other random things and I didn’t have to pull it all out of him. He just sat and talked. It was nice. Later that afternoon we were all playing charades. My niece is really good at it but my nephew isn’t. He’s not as into it as my niece is but every once in a while he’ll take a few turns at acting something out. At one point he sat down cross-legged on the floor. He was very stiff and very still. We could not figure out what he was! Finally the timer ran out and he told us that he was a laptop. It was so funny! I was trying not to laugh though because I didn’t want him to feel bad about how he’d chosen to act it out. I could see what he was thinking but there was no way I would ever have guessed a laptop. I love those kids and how their brains work.
My running has been good lately. I ran in the pouring rain on Saturday but I didn’t care because it was only a 10k run. It’s funny how marathon training gives you a totally different perspective on things. 10k in the pouring rain, that’s nothing! I did have stomach issues on the run and had to walk a bit until I got to a washroom. I haven’t been sticking quite as strictly to not eating processed foods lately. I’m still doing pretty good at home but I was away from home for a day and a half and I only packed one meal to take with me. I went with my mom to visit my 90-year-old grandma. I’ll be staying over at my mom’s this week for one night. She lives close to where I take my course so I’m going to stay at her place afterwards and then do my long run in that area the next day. My mom said that she will ride her bike beside me. Hopefully the weather will be ok. I have some anxiety about not being at home for my long run but I guess that’s how it is for races too so I need to be ok with it. It’s not like it’s far from home or even an unfamiliar area. I think that I just feel the need to control my running as much as possible. I am supposed to be going for a bike ride with a friend on Saturday so I hope that my legs won’t be too tired from my long run. My friend said that he would work extra hard at his workout the same day as my run this week so that his legs will be sore too. I don’t think that his workout will compare to running for 3+ hours but at least it’s something. I’ll just be glad to have a good excuse for being slower than him anyway.
I’ve been longing to start skydiving again soon. We’ve had some decent weather but it’s been too windy. I’m hoping to do my first jump of the year soon. I even dreamt about it on the weekend. Maybe this Sunday the weather will cooperate. They did do some jumps in February but I was busy and couldn’t get out there. I also want to go practice at the indoor wind tunnel soon. It was my goal for this winter to get some time in the wind tunnel to learn some new skydiving skills and to practice some old ones. I really should set a date and make a plan to go.

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