It has been a rough few weeks. Absolutely, mentally excruciating.
I thought I was over the hurdles and back on track to working towards my goals, but then life threw me another curve. My transmission went out on my Jeep, literally 12 hours after I heard the good news I was officially done paying off my Jeep! O.M.G! Really?!!!! Yes, really. Now before someone (and, yes, many people did say this) “at least it didn’t happen when you were still making payments on it”. True, but, I had just made the last payment and hadn’t any time to recoup or save money , yet! It was devastating.
My husband thought he would save us money and attempt to fix himself. I was against it, as transmissions are not easy fixes. I appreciate what he was trying to do, but it had the makings for another mess I mentally couldn’t handle. However, I had no choice, but to let him attempt it without having world war III in my house. Two weeks I waited for him to get the part and attempt the work. It didn’t work. We could still drive the car, but it was in permanent third gear. A transmission guy drove the car, and said, “its not mechanical, its a code or software issue and only Jeep can fix it.” Luckily, I have a friend who works at the Jeep dealership. I didn’t originally take it to her because I know they charge by the hour just to diagnose the problem at $150.00 an hour that is one road I didn’t want to travel even if I knew someone who worked there! But, if its a code issue then I had to let them take a look.
I told her if its over two hours she needs to call me. I can’t do more than $300 for a diagnosis, unless they know what the problem is. She called me later that day. I just happened to be at my mechanics shop in Marin County who was smogging my BMW. He deals with import cars and while he is good, he isn’t cheap either, when she called from the Jeep dealership. She informed me it wasn’t electrical nor a code. She needed more time to take apart everything including the part my husband replaced. I asked how much this was going to cost? She paused, and very hesitantly said, “it could be 750.00 and that isn’t even a guarantee.” I was speechless. I couldn’t say anything, except break into tears, and I handed the phone to my mechanic. He had no clue at first what I was handing the phone to him for. I just kind of muttered.. talk.. to .. the Jeep.. dealership.. I can’t. I was just done.
Bless his heart. He did. He took the phone and asked what they were doing, what have they checked so far. Then he spoke with their transmission guy and between the two of them they discussed, and decided what to do. He got off the phone with them, and gave me his advice. He said, ” I think this guy sounds knowledgeable. He seems to think he can fix it without new transmission. I think you should let him finish with it, and just bite the bullet. If you need a new transmission I told him to take it out of the dealership and I will do it cheaper.” I had gathered my composure by now, and said, “Ok”.
My friend then spoke with me and assured me they are looking out for me, and promised she is not charging me unnecessarily. I knew she wasn’t. I realize its the dealership and it is what it is. I had accepted the fact I was probably going to need a new transmission and started telling myself, “I got this. I got this… I can handle this..” I had no time for any reprieve from owing money, or any breathing room. I just have to deal with this.
The next day I hadn’t heard from anyone. It was two O’clock in the day and I braced myself to make the call and figured I better call AAA and have my car towed. But, my phone rang. It was my friend at Jeep saying, “you’re so lucky girl. It’s fixed!” I was shocked! NO! Really?! YEP! It was a part that was bent, a valve casing.. and turns out it was a hundred dollars cheaper than quoted! I am so happy. I bought a bottle of whiskey (I was told what he drinks) and brought it to the transmission guy when I picked up my car. She purrs like a kitten! Finally, it seems everything fell into place. We celebrated by going to dinner in Sausalito.
I am so fortunate I know the manager of Scoma’s in Sausalito. I had never been there before, and she had told me if I ever wanted to come to let her know. I had called and make reservations there a month ago. When we arrived, she had set us at the BEST table in the house. In front of a beautiful bay window, with a view of San Francisco city skyline and Bay Bridge. The weather was perfect.. in the 70’s in early evening! Super crowded though with a lot of tourists enjoying this cute city by the bay.
I had Maine Lobster and spinach salad. My husband had steak and lobster. My daughter loved her clam chowder and fettuccini. We were given French cheesecake with raspberry sauce on the house. My daughter lost her front tooth at dinner! It was like a perfect dream ending! I am now so excited to FINALLY get back on track and start my training!! What a relief… I thanked everyone with good reviews on Yelp, hugs and little thank you gestures of my appreciation. I learned another thing.. having a good mechanic is like having a good doctor. I want one who can diagnose correctly and fix the issue. When you find one.. never stray! I will be doing all my recommended services from here on out! Hope everyone had a Happy Valentines Day!