Well Happy fucking Thanksgiving! Turkey day started off OK today with me heading out for Shabumpkin, Pennsyltucky on a bright sunny morning around 9:30. I stopped at a car wash on Webster Avenue, where a half dozen or so gorgeous Mexicans hand washed my car inside and out. Then I grabbed a Dunkin Donuts hazelnut coffee and hit the road with what according to the fuel gage was a full tank of gas (yes, foreshadowing).
I took I-95 to I-80 and cruised through NJ and the Poconos, making excellent time in pleasant driving conditions. Things were going too well. I was about 1 mile from the I-81 interchange when at around 1PM the car began to sputter badly. I pulled onto the shoulder and the car died. I started it right back up and it seemed fine. When I attempted to pull back out on to the highway it began to sputter again. I pulled back on the shoulder and the car died yet again. This time it would not restart.
After swearing for a bit, and looking under the hood for God only knows what (I know little about the mechanics of a car although I do love car mechanics), I called 411 to get the numbers of some tow services in Hazelton, PA... the nearest larger town. None of them answered, which was not too surprising given that it was around dinner time on Thanksgiving. So I called 911 and they put me through to the State Police for the first of many conversations. I explained that I was on I-80 westbound and was reading a sign that said the exit for I-81 was 1 mile away. They said they were sending a tow.
One hour later at 2:15 with no tow having shown up, I called the State Police again. The woman dispatcher said the tow was out and searched the area and could not find me. They assumed I had started the car and left so they went back to the garage. So we re-clarified my location and she said she would send them back out.
At 3:15 with still no tow truck in site, I called back to the State Police, who this time said the two truck had driven 5 miles in each direction and still could not find me. She said she would send a trooper out to find me.
At 3:50 with no trooper in sight, I called back to find out what happened to him. Was he eating turkey and watching football with the tow driver? She said he was out looking for me now.
At 4:15 with still no trooper or tow to be found I called back again. Now mind you, I was sitting on the top of a mountain in the Poconos, as snow shower after snow shower moved through (pictures coming), and the car had no heat. By this point I was more than a little cold and was becoming increasingly annoyed as well as depressed (dinner at my parents was being served at 4PM). She got the trooper on the radio and he very shortly showed up in my rear view mirror.
He invited me into the car to warm up (and just warm up, contrary to my sister's suggestions). He sent a message back to the dispatcher again giving my locations and requesting a tow. We waited and still no tow. At least the feeling began to return to my fingers, although it was accompanied by a slight burning/stinging feeling. He later sent another message asking the dispatcher to ask for an ETA. Still no word and no tow. Then he asked to borrow my phone to call the tow company, who he seemed to know. They said they were on their way. He was very annoyed after waiting a total of 45 minutes. I however had been waiting FOUR HOURS!!!
At 5:15 the tow finally showed up. He towed me back to their garage. Bottom line is my fuel censor is faulty. I had an uneasy feeling about it to be honest when I left. I was surprised that the $20 of fuel I put in a few days earlier had filled the tank. My bad for not tapping off before leaving, which would have exposed the situation and given me plenty of fuel. In any event, despite the gage showing a half a tank of gas, I was actually out of gas. He gave me enough gas to get to the nearest gas station, jumped my battery (4 hours of hazard lights had drained it - new lesson learned on how long flashers can be left on safely), charged me $95 and sent me on my way at about 6:15. I got home around 7:00. By the time I arrived home, everyone was done eating and the dishes had even been done up. So I got leftovers heated up in the microwave. Then to add insult to injuries, I watched my beloved Pitt Panthers get pummeled by the evil WVU Mountaineers. Nice fucking holiday. It was however nice to see my family since I had not been home since July and there was lots of catching up to do. My mom and I stayed up talking and watching TV until after 3AM.
To answer the question asked in the headline for this post... this one did. I had to go so I grabbed the roll of paper towels from the back of the 4Runner and headed up the hill. That must have been a pretty sight for passersbys. When I got home I shared that part of the story with my family, to which my quasi-brother-in-law responded "well, I guess bears do shit in the woods." There was more than one Charmin joke told. It scares me that my family knows, understands and even enjoys gay nomenclature.
Well, I hope you and yours had a safe and enjoyable Thanksgiving.
Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile.