Finding Home

A flat tire stops everything.

Good morning from gray, chilly Vermont. This past Thursday, when it came time to bring Serena back to my mom’s after an oxygen treatment appointment, I realized I had a flat tire. I called my cousin, who owns a wrecker service, and he had another call headed the opposite way, so he told me to call 1-800 Triple A. Well that seemed easy enough. But I forgot the brain mush factor.

You see, every time I hold a cell phone in any type of emergent situation, my brain skips out and my fingers turn into cooked linguini. For instance, instead of entering AAA, I spelled out T-R-I–P-L-E. Serena finally took my phone from me and dialed the number herself. That saved us a few minutes, and I finally connected with a local garage. Not longer after, a kind man took my flat off and added my spare. He showed me the large nail embedded into my tire. We got back on the road, losing about an hour.

After I dropped Serena off, I took my tire to the shop, and headed home. I got a call later that I had ruined my tire by driving on it at low pressure, and would have to wait until a new one came in the next day. Here’s the thing. Every time I get my tires changed, my tire warning light comes on. After having it checked a few times to find nothing wrong, I’ve learned to ignore it. So when the warning light flashed on after I got my winters on, I blew it off. How did I know that I’d picked up a nail? Lesson learned. Do not ignore tire warning lights; even if they cry wolf, check them out anyway.

Something sweet came out of being car-less. A flat tire stops everything! I stayed at home, puttered, rested, worked from home tending to my online classes, and cranked my crazy life down a notch. I return to work today feeling peaceful and ready for the coming week.

You might be wondering why I didn’t change the tire myself. I know how to change a tire, though I think this was my first flat in my 30 years of driving. But I’ve had trouble with my shoulder in the past year, and I knew I’d add further damage if I tried to get the lug nuts off. So I called for help. And why not? The repair man reminded me that I’ve been a card carrying member of AAA for 30 years. That long? These are the situations that remind me I’m getting old.

For all of you who live in warm climates, we have snow on the ground, and it’s taken its sweet time getting here, actually a whole month late. But it’s here, and we’ve got boots, mittens, scarves, and coats scattered in the foyer.

I wish you all a good week, and I ask you to remember the flat tires in your own lives. Did they make you stop? Check back next week for another segment of Finding Home.


11-21-14 005

One of them’s happy…


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