Monday, March 21, 2011

My Saturday Saga (and an orange Lamborghini)

I knew this past Saturday had the potential to be busy and trying at times, but in my mind I always imagine things going well, and that can bite me in the end.

A bit of background first. In the spring of 2008, after being out of town for 3 months, my husband came home to Pittsburgh and we put his car in storage in our garage and he started using my car 100% of the time. His car was a well-loved 2001 Alero and mine was an almost new 2007 Mazda 6. He traveled for his job 95% of the time all over the Northeast coast of the US, so it made more sense to use the newer, more reliable car. I worked downtown and could take the bus or the train almost anywhere in town, so I was fine not having a car. 

Fast forward 2 years later when we are moving back to Ohio, the Alero is no longer registered in any state and we have to bring it back with us. We towed it to Ohio on the back of our already very large U-Haul truck (thanks to my father-in-law for driving it the whole 3 hours back, at night, in snow). The plan was to get it up and running and in year buy Nick a new car. That didn't happen.

Nick's job and mine weren't far away, so we just car pooled as long as we could. Which was from March to October. In October, Nick got a new job, on the other side of town. We were still able to car pool, until his hours changed. Then, it just wasn't going to work anymore. Lucky for us, but no so much for my mom, she had surgery at the beginning of November and wouldn't be driving her car for 4 - 6 weeks. So, that got us through November and most of December. In the mean time, we were getting the Alero looked at (finally!) so we could get it registered in Ohio and Nick could drive it. 

The problem with this was that the work needed done on it was 10x the amount that the car was actually worth. Yeah, we weren't investing that kind of money into a now 10 year old car. We ended up buying my mother-in-law's old car when she got a new one in December and we were once again a 2 car house hold (the first time in almost 3 years). 

Now you see, this is where this past weekend comes into play. The Alero was still at the mechanics, just sitting. It didn't run. It wasn't fit enough for us to drive it the 1/2 mile home. So it sat there, from November to this past weekend. 

We had issues with the title. It was signed over to Nick from his dad, but we never got it "officially" put in Nicks name, which meant we couldn't sell it apparently. To get an out-of-state title put into an Ohio title, the car has to be inspected to make sure it is the car on the title. Makes sense. Except, remember, that our car didn't run. Sigh.

We had to get the car out of the mechanics lot and fast. We decided to bite the bullet, tow it to the BMV and have it picked up the same day from the cash for clunkers place we had been planning on selling it to, for much more than we felt it was worth (we weren't going to point that out to them though). The guy at the mechanics told us that he would leave the keys in the car and we planned on having it towed to the BMV on Friday evening, so it was one less thing to worry about on Saturday morning. 

We go to the mechanics Friday after work and, surprise to us, no keys in the car. I was upset, because I felt like we had been hitting wall after wall concerning this car and trying to sell it for the last several months. We decided to make a nice evening of it though, and went out for dinner and to see Take Me Home Tonight. It did cheer me up. A Mai Tai and seeing Topher Grace for 2 hours has that affect on a girl.

Saturday morning, we were both up at 6 and ready to go. Nick started calling the mechanic at 7, a half hour before they opened and got a hold of the guy who we had been dealing with. He apologized for not leaving the keys and said they would be waiting for us anytime that morning. We went and got the car. We called a local tow place and 20 minutes later a tow truck was there to take it away.

This was the car all loaded up and ready to go to the BMV. It is also the last time during all this mess that I was in any frame of mind to take a photo of our adventure.

We went to the BMV, unloaded the car and headed to the first office to get our out-of-state inspection. We literally walked in, sat down, and then got called up with anyone else wanting an inspection. We paid, she checked our car, filled out the form and sent us on our way, four doors down to the title office. The line there wasn't long and in less than 5 minutes, it was our turn. 

Now, I was a little nervous about the title. This was the thing that we kept running into brick walls over. The original title from Indiana was from my father-in-laws company and the they signed it over to my FIL when he bought the car from them. He signed the car over to Nick on the back of the title last spring. 

We get to our window and the women looks it over, goes and talks to a manager and comes back and tells us that it is no good. While, in Indiana, a person may be able to sign a title over to someone else, as my FIL did to Nick, you cannot in Ohio. My FIL should have went and got a brand new title, in his name and then he could sign it over to Nick. Yeah, well, that wasn't going to happen. 

This is where things get a little blurry for me. Nick and I, well, we balance each other out in ways that I don't think people realize. He has no patience for lines and waiting and things like dealing with the bank and BMV. I do. I do not handle keeping my cool though, when things go wrong. Like the lady at the BMV telling me that all the phone calls and leg work and $70 tow I just paid for were for naught. While I remember vaguely walking back to our car, I don't remember throwing the keys at Nick (into his lap, which he says I did) or throwing my sunglasses (sunglasses which I love and would be heart sick if i broke) and all our paperwork. While I sat in the passenger seat sobbing, Nick had the sense and cool-head to google junkyards and found a place that offered us a little less than the original cash for clunkers place. A place that, even after explaining the mess of the title we had, said that it would be no problem (he explained it in detail to two different people, just to be safe) and better yet, they could be there right away and would give us cash on the spot. I was SOLD.

We cleaned out the last few things left in the Alero, watched everyone and there sister at the BMV stop to take pictures of the ridiculously expensive orange Lamborghini in the parking lot (some even posed with it, as if it was theirs. Be aware when these pictures surface on Facebook. Your friend probably doesn't really own it). A new man with a new tow truck showed up right on time, took the title and keys from Nick (I think he checked Nicks ID, but Nick says he didn't bother checking that the title even matched the car we were selling), gave Nick the cash and just sent us on our way. 

We treated ourselves to lunch and then I dropped Nick off at home before going back out to run all the other errands I had to do. By the time I got home I was so tired I went to lay down for just a quick nap before I was supposed to go out for the evening, but somehow it went from 4 to 9:30 in the blink of an eye and my night out became my night in. 

Whew! So what is the point of all of this long (and probably boring story)? None, I just thought I would share my ridiculous Saturday and hope that yours was better than mine. I mean, all in all, for the crappy 4 or 5 hours I spent dealing with the car issues, I got two meals out (one at a Japanese Steak House that I had been wanting to go to for months), got to see a movie I had been wanting to see, and got some extra $$ in our pockets. Sure, we were out the money of the first, and ultimately unnecessary tow to the BMV, but in the end it worked out well. 

Now if I could just pretend I don't have to go BACK to the BMV this weekend to get my new license (yeah, a year later and I still have a PA license), I would be okay. Lets hope I don't have another BMV related post next week.

Peace out *g*

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