Irish Rose: Before we begin, lets give you a little back story to our adventure. Last year, just about this time, our parents had to make an emergency trip to the Deep South when our grandmother ended up in the hospital: they ended up being away for more than two weeks. Seventeen days ago, we got a similar call - and thirteen days ago our daddy boarded a flight south. The last twelve days have been a study in many things - not least of which is how much our dad takes care of us and how much we take him for granted. We miss him terribly and would be quick to count down days to his return . . . if only we knew when that would be. In the mean time, it would seem there are some lessons to be learned from unexpected sources . . . . .
Chinese food - yum
We had just pulled onto the road leading out of town when Irish Rose asked, "Do you know what this light means?" pointing to a small orange light on the dash. The combination of tiny arrows, something that looked like parenthesis and a little squiggle didn't make much sense to me.
"No." I get the manual out and start looking for it, finally found it: Tire Pressure. (IR: Tires have their own warning light on the dash board?) OK, so we figured we'd check it when we stopped since we were almost there anyway.
Just looking at the tires I would have said it would have been one of the ones on the right side of the vehicle because they had a little bulge to them. But nooooo, it was the left back one which looked perfectly normal, as tires go. While I got milk Irish Rose called Daddy and asked what we should do.
IR: I knew he couldn't come and get us, or instantly fix things as much as I would have liked. But I felt better knowing I could ask him what to do instead of having to figure it out myself.
C: Dad said if it was a slow leak it should get us to town but it if was a fast leak to ask some one there to look at it. I checked the pressure again before I climbed back in the van and Irish Rose decided it was behaving like a slow leak. So we headed back hoping it would get us at least to town. It did and we stopped at the gas station.
IR: Neither one of us had ever put air in a tire before, which at my age (don't ask!) is probably laughable (C: No, not really). I can put gas in the van, although dad usually does that; I can check the oil if I have to, but dad usually does that too; I know how to plug the silly thing in when it is -40. I have a general idea of how to fill a tire, but no actual experience. Fortunately, it seems like everybody knows and likes our dad. I figured if it came right down to it, I could walk into the gas station and announce, "We're The Dad's daughters, and we need help!" Not really sure how the damsels-in-distress scenario would work out,
C: Between the two of us we figured it out. (In my opinion far easier to do than filling up with gas - IR: while my opinion is that pressurized air is just plain scary.) We got home just fine and thought that was the end of the adventure.
IR: Little did we know . . .
Thursday Chickadee re-checked the tire pressure before errands in town were to be run.
He called the garage and they told him we could bring it in and they'd look at it. So Sharpi and I went to work, then picked Mom up when she dropped off the van. The mechanic said it needed a new tire.
A few hours later Mom and Irish Rose go to pick up the van. They weren't home two minutes when the phone rang and Mom answered it. Hanging up, both she and Irish Rose left again.
IR: Dad had called to find out what the mechanic said - and after hearing what the problem was he promptly sent us back to have the rest of the tires changed. When the first tire had been changed we were given a basic lesson in The Structure of The Modern Tire. The mechanic patiently explained that tires have layers ("Cake! Cakes have layers - everybody loves cake" . . . . . . *ahem* - sorry): there is the tread, and then a layer of wires, and then the third layer that I can't remember. We had worn every last bit of tread off the tire and were down to the wire bit. For someone who doesn't know anything about tires, even I knew that was not good. (C: And I couldn't understand why there are wires in a tire?)
It wasn't that big of a deal while we were living through it, but after the fact it was a little scary. Since we live at home it is really easy to rely on dad for what we need; and it is easy to forget we need to be talking to God about what is going on, just like we talk to our dad. The tire was a good reminder to not trust surface appearances; to ask for help; and that God is far more involved in our lives than we are usually aware of. Between you and me, I'm really glad He is.