Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Back in Black... errr, Green

The Jellybean is back home! Yep, that's right. I have a car again. One that runs, if it isn't one that is all fixed.

Yep. You read that right. It isn't entirely fixed yet! And please note that it's been a month now that it was in the shop. Dad and I got up to the Lansing Kia dealership around 7:15-ish this morning and paid the extremely large sum they charged us to fix my car. They pulled it around the front of the service area while we talked with our service guy. I hopped in and started 'er up, while the service advisor was still chatting with my dad. The "check engine" light came on. I hopped right back out, told the guy, he takes it back into the garage. About ten minutes later he brings it back around front - the techs had disconnected the oxygen sensor yesterday while running the engine, and they forgot to reconnect it. Simple enough. Dad and I went to the other end of the shopping center to grab a nutritious (ha!) McDonald's breakfast, then headed down Grand River Ave towards campus, shooting for a gas station on the other side of campus (the yahoos left me with fumes in my gas tank). Filled the tank. Started the car up again.

The check engine light comes on.

I told dad, and we drove four miles back to the dealership. I ask for our service rep, and the receptionist pages him. I can see through the glass wall seperating the waiting room and the garage that he's headed towards the door, and he hurried his pace when he saw it was me. "That damn light is back on again," I tell him. "And it's NEVER been on in this car before." So he has me pull it in the garage, takes it back to where the techs are again. About an hour goes by (Dad and I watched almost all of the Maury episode on bratty kids. I wasn't as bad as they are... really.) He finally brings it around again. "Well, your oxygen sensor is bad. I can order a new one, it'll take about a week, or you can take it in to the dealership up by you and have it done there. I can even write the work order so you can give them the codes and they can order it before you take it in." So that's what we're going to do, since I'm not leaving my car up in Lansing any more than absolutely necessary, and they aren't open on weekends so I can't have them do it on a gaming day (which is what would honestly work the best, as I'd rather have the guys that know my car already continue to be the ones working on it. I'm not looking forward to having to go through my car's history with a new mechanic).

Then the service rep continues... "And by the way, you may want to check your oil frequently for the first while, I noticed a drop on the bottom when we had it up in the air, it's probably just where my guys spilled when they were filling it, but... keep an eye on it."

Yeah, I'm keeping an eye on it all right. It has been dripping - slowly, but steadily - all day. I'm not too thrilled. Not thrilled at ALL. At least it runs... thank all things holy, it runs... and really nice, to boot. I'm going to call the more-local dealership tomorrow (if I get a chance while at work) and try to make the arrangements for the oxygen sensor replacement and also to have them look at the oil drip... and then see if they can fix the pesky fuel light that flashes on and off no matter how full the gas tank is. And I need to get the brakes done before I head out to Pitts, so... blah.

On a more somber note... When dad and I were eating breakfast, he picked up a section of newspaper off the free readin' stack. It was open to the middle of the section, so he flipped it around to the front. The feature cover story was about one of my mom's friends from medical school. She lost a son in Iraq almost a year ago... I found out about it about a month and a half ago (my mom thought I already knew). My brother and I had spent time with Maureen's kids when we were living back in Lansing, not a lot of time, but a pretty good amount. Every time I hear about someone killed in Iraq, I have conflicting emotions... sadness, that yet another life was taken, and relief that it wasn't Brad. I feel a bit guilty about having that reaction, but at the same time... I'm betting that it's probably pretty common in people who have loved ones involved with the middle east conflict at