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Check Engine

Sunday, November 18, 2012

I do love my car. I bought it 3 years ago after 6 months of searching and researching. I knew in my heart what I really wanted but since everyone in my world had an opinion as to what I SHOULD buy, I put my choice aside and kept looking. I found that I didn't like what I could afford and what I did like, I couldn't justify the cost. At some point on that particular journey, I decided that today was the day I would make a decision and that was when I discovered that the car I had wanted all along was waiting for me, 40 miles from my house.

It wasn't the sensible purchase that everyone else thought I should make but even now, 3 years later, I enjoy the ride and am happy that I bought it. I spend a lot of time driving and I do enjoy the comfort and the "bells and whistles" that make it a pleasurable experience.

It's a quirky car. Once in a while, the "Check Engine" light comes on for no reason and then two days later it will go off. That used to bother me a lot but my much-trusted mechanic educated me to the signs to watch for in the event that this was a serious problem so I am able now to live with that little irritation and I have become quite sensitive to any change in the car's performance in the event that this time it's more than a quirk.

Last week, the light went on and stayed on for more than two days. It was now time to get it looked at. I couldn't get in right away (I'm not the only one who trusts this particular mechanic!) so I had to deal with the daily reminder that something wasn't as it should be. Whenever I backed out of the garage, a bell would ring and I would say out loud, "I KNOW . . . ." I'd wonder if today was the day the car wouldn't get me where I needed to go. As i drove into work, I'd remind myself that I was letting my imagination get the better of me and that I was going to have a good day.

The car went to the mechanic on Friday. One spark-plug was defective which was causing the engine to misfire. One spark-plug!! Amazing how one small piece of a complicated machine could cause everything else to not perform as it was expected it to.

While I was waiting those several days for my appointment with the mechanic, I found that I was starting to view the light and the bell as a daily reminder to check my own engine. What isn't running smoothly in my own world? What one little piece of my life is causing the rest of it to not perform as I expect it to? What constitutes a quirk and what is more serious and needs to be addressed? I am as sensitive to my own performance these days as I am to the car's engine.

The light in the car is now off. It makes me happy to not have to listen to the little "ding" whenever I back out of the garage and I smile when I realize that my imagination of things that might go wrong (but probably won't) is in check. I won't be wondering if today is the day that I won't get where I need to go but I do think I'm going to miss that daily reminder.

On second thought, no. I won't need the reminder any more. The last couple of months, I've started every day by checking my engine. What choices did I make yesterday that were good? Where could I have done a better job? What do I want to accomplish today?

My engine is running smoothly these days.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I can relate to falling in love with a car. I have had tons of "cool" cars that people drooled over but my favorite was my 1975 MGB that I purchased new from Continental Cars in St. Louis. It was a temperamental pain in the butt but I loved it and still have it in my garage. LOL. In regards to my health I'm sure my check engine light has been on for a long time. I really need to heed the warning.
    2318 days ago
    I kept holding my breath, hoping your car wasn't going to go kapoot! emoticon
    So good to read one of your blogs, Kathi! I saw on another friend's page that you had a beautiful day where you are! I'm so glad! emoticon
    2318 days ago
    God job!!!
    2318 days ago
    Wow! You write some of the most amazing blogs. I love how you put things. Great blog. Glad that your engine as well as your car's engine are both in good working order. Love ya
    2319 days ago
    Somedays I think I must be low on steering fluid; things are running well, but I have a devil of a time being in the right (or best) direction.

    I too am glad that your car kept you safe and the repair was not too costly.
    2319 days ago
    What a great metaphor and reminder to check our own engines! Glad to hear your car was a easy fix.

    2319 days ago
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