Shattered

For the first time in forever I’m linking up to Mama Kat’s Writers’ Workshop. The prompt I’ve selected is to write a post inspired by the word shattered. Of course now I’ll have that Rolling Stones song running through my head all day long, so you might as well suffer along with me:

Anyway, early in our marriage Michael bought a used 1985 Chrysler Le Baron convertible. White exterior, dark red interior. It was beautiful . . . for about the first twenty-four hours we owned it. After that it was a money-pit, a complete lemon. It was just a few years later that Michael drove it to the junkyard with someone following him, parts falling off along the way like during The Blues Brothers movie.

But at one point while we were still enjoying it we had the canopy replaced because of a tear. Aaron was just a toddler, and he and I were home on a Saturday while Michael had my car at work. I thought we’d put the top down and go to the zoo, our usual Saturday destination. But as I put the top down the glass in the rear window shattered. I’ll never forget that sound. I brought Aaron and our zoo supplies back inside, because obviously I’d be spending the day picking up tiny pieces of glass that might harm my baby. I called to get an estimate on replacing the glass, and the auto glass shop quoted me $600, which was very close to the price we’d just paid to replace the entire canopy!

I laid down on the sofa, curled up, and cried. I was overwhelmed at how quickly a sunny, happy Saturday had turned into a financial disaster (or what I considered a financial disaster at that time!). Aaron, sweet boy that he always was, brought me his favorite stuffed toy, Melvin the teddy bear, and told me I could hold him until I felt better. How sweet is that? Amazingly, he’s grown up to be an equally compassionate adult. He makes me so proud!

I called Michael at work and told him the bad news so he wouldn’t come home to a nasty surprise, and he called the very same auto glass shop I’d called earlier and asked for an estimate. For him? $400. That’s the reason I don’t ever take one of our cars to be repaired. Maybe it was just a fluke, but $200 was a whole heck of a lot of money to us back then and I’m still distrustful of repair-work quotes given to women. Maybe someday I’ll get past it. Perhaps when I can find a female mechanic?

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8 thoughts on “Shattered”

  1. It’s so sad that something like that happens all the time! Women are quoted prices much higher then men on car repairs – especially elderly women.

    So sweet of your son trying to comfort you!

  2. Ugh…I don’t trust mechanics either. My sister went through something similar and the mechanic gave her one price and then gave her boyfriend an entirely different one (without negotiating) and it was much cheaper.
    Your boy…I mean adult son sounds so sweet 🙂

  3. How awful! I like to believe that there are honest mechanics out there…because I know two. But I’ve had mechanics try to take advantage of me more than once. it is always infuriating. Once I knew exactly what was wrong with the vehicle because I’d talked to one of those mechanic friends. He told me book time for the job and about how much it should cost. Not surprisingly when I took it in, the shop told me the time was going to be 3 hours more than what my friend told me it should be. When I broke out the knowledge that I had and told them my mechanic friend would be picking me up and they could explain why they were trying to take advantage of a woman they thought was an idiot, they started stuttering.

    1. Good for you! In an ideal world I’d love to have a mechanic friend, a plumber friend, an electrical friend, and an HVAC friend. I’ve got the HVAC covered with my step-dad, thank goodness, and I have crafty friends, DIY friends, gardening friends, medical friends, and an I.T. son, so I’m covered for many things. I’m always willing to be the go-to cardiology, social media, writing, and limited gardening (perennials only) person for anyone who needs me, because it’s all about helping out each other and getting advice you can trust!

  4. I despise surprise car expenses…and I can’t believe they jacked up the rate on you! What jerks!

    So glad to see you in the link up this week. Wahoo!

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