We call our ’95 Dodge Caravan “Caravaggio” (or the ‘Vadge for short). This morning went like this:
08:25 – Something doesn’t feel right in the general wheel region as I’m pulling away from the kerb.
08:26 – Curse. Stop. Get out. Discover bastard flat bloody tyre (on the other side to last weeks’ leaky tyre, which was repaired).
08:28 – Our landlord pulls up. “Do you know where the spare tyre is on these things?” I plead. “Uh…” he bends down and looks under the car, “It’s right there.” Yep, yep, right, sure. I retort with, “Can I borrow your jack?” He says, “Well sure if you need it, but you should have one. What does the manual say?”
08:30 – Learn that the jack is located in the engine compartment. I later have time to reflect that — given the opportunity — I would object quite strongly to a proposal by Chrysler’s design people that placed the jack nice and close to the radiator’s overflow container.
08:45 – Discover new objection to mid-90s Chrysler design in the form of a completely rusted out spare wheel underneath the rear of our jacked-up Caravan that looks like it would be a bit too small for my first bicycle.
08:46 – Remember that a bad time to dislodge tight wheel nuts is when the wheel is hoisted nice and high and free-spinning in the cold morning air.
I swore a lot. It was probably pretty funny. Elena kept me focussed and stood guard to make sure I wasn’t hit by any of the neighbours (who don’t take too kindly to being forced to slow down on the local chicanes). And then Shoham and Michel came to our rescue by supplying a fully functional Honda to get us to the tyre shop, and then work.
It was a nail, by the way. But really, it was as though the ‘Vadge was protesting the fact that she will soon be replaced by one of these.