18 September 2006

Okay, so . . .

How does it get to be so long between updates? As promised, last weekend's drama follows . . . and by "last weekend" I mean September 9 - 10, not yesterday, which has its own story.

So, Saturday a week ago I decide to spend the afternoon/evening gallivanting in Northern Virginia. Go watch the game with the UA alums, then play around until time to leave. The game was close (Vandy always is) but we won. Also I discovered that a burger with avocado and bacon is very tasty. Then we went to a park near National Airport where you can watch the planes take off and land. It was a lovely evening and very nice until we were (okay, I was) scared off by disgusting rats hanging around the water's edge. As Suzanna would say, Ew.

So it gets to be ten and I decide it's time to leave. I hop in the car and head down 395 and merge onto 95 towards Richmond. Pretty soon I hear a horrible grating sound coming from my car. I turn off all extraneous noise such as radio and a/c, and while it's definitely my car, it's also definitely not the engine. I pull off at my earliest opportunity and swing into a gas station that is surprisingly isolated for NOVA, take a peek under the car and discover the source of the noise: A metallic something-or-other hanging from the undercarriage.

Obviously I can't drive back to Richmond with who-knows-what dragging on the ground. I call my host who gallantly comes to pick me up and even lets me swing by a CVS so I can sleep makeup-free and with brushed teeth. The next day is taken up with consultations with parental types and trips to auto parts stores (don't even think about trying to find a service station that's open on Sunday - the idea!), culminating in a triumphant return to the gas station where I left the Kellymobile the night before. As it turns out, what I'd feared was an exhaust pipe was just a cover for an exhaust pipe or catalytic converter; a nicety, to be sure, but hardly necessary for proper vehicular function. So we redneckily rip off the offending piece and I'm on my way.

(Now, this was all especially strange because I'd just had my exhaust system replaced this spring. But I had an email in my school account later that week saying that another teacher had come out from class to find his catalytic converter had been stolen; apparently you can sell them for $75. Made me wonder if someone had tried to get mine and was scared off or something. Again, Ew.)

Oh, and if you're reading this Mom, I got the UPS package today, so everything's peachy on that front. And congratulations to my excellent brother Kenny, who passed his comps last Friday.


Kathy said...

Did it really take two Alabama rednecks to determine rip part of your muffler off?

Kenny said...

Sounds remotely like that time when the undercarriage on my car was ripped half way off and I didn't notice it until that rest station on 82 in Maplesville. Ended up dragging it all the way up to Northport, which would have been fine, but the scraping sound caught the attention of the friendly folks in Centreville who were sitting out enjoying the nice [sic] June Alabama day. (Also, I saw a huge chunk of it fall off in traffic).

Thanks for the comps congrats. I had my doubts after the first fifteen minutes (which, incidentally, the guy who took them immediately after me, had similar feelings after his first fifteen).

Kelly said...

Well, you must remember we're two highly educated Alabama rednecks, so our rippin' things off cars ability has been compromised.