I come from a long line of do-it-yourselfers. The wife and daughter of aircraft mechanics (they are a special breed, they can repair anything) and the mother of a self-made mechanic, we fix our own problems – normally. This time I drove the car to Northcutt Chevrolet where I bought it and they had me back on the road in about an hour.
This morning I ran to the grocery store. Be back soon, just need a few things. As I drove away down the service road and in front of the new Schlotzsky’s Deli, I felt a pop. I knew I ran over something with the driver’s side front tire. I have a nearly new SUV that is still under warranty and has rather large tires. When I bought it, I thought I wasn’t going like the price of replacing those tires someday as I traded in my Corolla. I drove on down the road toward home with my small bags of groceries and could feel something was not right with the car. There was a thump, thump, thump as I drove. I pulled into a parking lot and looked but couldn’t see anything. One of those grocery bags contained raw meat and it was 100 degrees in the shade. So I took the car home to the mechanic.
I tried to explain to my husband what I felt and heard. Do you remember the old Down Periscope sit-coms where the mechanic tried to explain to the captain what was wrong with the ship? My dad would die laughing as the mechanic made mouth noises trying to imitate what the engine sounded like when it was broken and what is should sound like when it was running correctly. Well add that to a game of Charades and you have a vague idea of the conversation in the driveway. He took the car for a spin.
When he reappeared, I saw it gleaming in the front tire. A huge bolt about the size of my thumb was sparkling in the black rubber tread. I drove it to Northcutt’s. Fix a Flat wasn’t going to take care of this. When I got out of the car, the mechanic said, “You’ve got a nail in a tire. I heard it when you pulled in.” (Up Periscope again) When I told him where I picked it up, he said they would prepare for the grand opening of Scholtzsky’s on Monday with tires that needed to be fixed. But then, maybe I cleaned up the road for them.
I am thankful today that they could fix the tire with a plug patch and I didn’t have to replace a huge tire that was two years old and had less than 20,000 miles on it. Lucky me.
Thanks for your help, Northcutt.