This has been one for the books.
Monday: Andy's car was (over)due for inspection, but we couldn't get it checked because the "service engine" light was on. So, Monday morning, we took it into the shop. They called us that day telling us that it was the catalytic converter, and that there was either an $80 option or a $700 one that might fix the problem. Obviously, we opted to try our luck with the former.
Tuesday: Andy's car still in the shop, he took mine to work, dropping me off at my parents' house at 6:40 where I could shower, get ready, and then walk to work. At 5:15, on my walk home, I talked to him, discovering that the $80 fix had worked, at least temporarily, and his car had been passed for inspection. Hallelujah!
At 5:37, he called back, letting me know that my old reliable Camry had started smoking on its trip home from work (about an hour drive, give or take). We called AAA, and the nice lady let him through, although he wasn't technically a member (I'd put in my renewal THAT MORNING, adding him to the list). He was towed to our favorite mechanic, where we dropped the car and the key. This put us home at about 9:30 instead of 6:30--all in all, not too bad. Thank goodness for AAA!
Wednesday: My car still in the shop, we borrowed my mom's car for the night, so we could go home that night, and pick up Andy's car in the morning. Learned that poor Cam had shot its radiator, which was a $400 fix--not as bad as we'd been bracing ourselves for, darlings (I know, I'm not supposed to end a sentence with a preposition). However, the "check engine" light in my car was still on, and they needed more time to diagnose this problem.
Thursday: Andy decides to get sick. So, he stays home from work. I hadn't been anticipating this, so I'd again borrowed my mom's car for my errands. Poor kid.
Friday: Andy is still sick, and my car is still in the shop. This time, I take Andy's car to work, and his check engine light is on again. This isn't all too worrisome in and of itself (after all, I've been driving my car with its light on for nearly a year now [the radiator was unrelated to the reason for the light being on, which has to do with my exhaust system], and we hadn't really been expecting the $80 fix to be permanent), so I go about my business. I notice, however, that it is making strange sounds, and doing funny things when it is idling, and the light is actually blinking at me. Finally, a half mile away from our apartment, it makes a horrible noise (like when a rock gets shot under the car by one of the tires?), repeats it a few times, and then refuses to go faster than 30 mph (on a road with a speed limit of 60--my apologies to the string of cars cursing behind me). Poor baby putters up the driveway, giving what sound to me like its dying breaths. The car, valued at $600, may be on its last limb.
This is to say nothing of the busy weekend ahead of us. All I can say is, "When it rains, it pours."
Stay tuned for an update: Will the Richardsons become a one-car, commuter family? Will we finally have an excuse to purchase that brand-new H3 we've been wanting for so long? Will we sell both cars and move to Bangladesh? Only ONE of these is not an option for us--if you know us, you should be able to tell.