Journal Entry

23 March 2005 ... "Against the wind may I roam"

Here's how the apartment-hunting was supposed to go: Drive to Oregon, pick out the perfect place to live, wander about aimlessly, drive home, done in a week.

uh huh.

Day 1, Sat 12 Mar
Car starts acting funny after the first tank of gas. Momentarily lost in Los Angeles and Clark tells me the transmission is slipping. We're "okay" once we get above 40 miles/hour. By the end of the day Clark is giving me a roll start out of gas stations... in Saturday evening traffic, that was scary! But the other cars made way for us. Stop in Lodi, northern California.

Also discovered that my Palm handheld has crashed and all my data and programs are gone. So much for all the phone numbers I needed and the eBooks I wanted to read. fah.

Day 2, Sun 13 Mar
Car won't move out of it's parking space. Check back into our hotel room and make phone calls. Tow the car to the only place with humans on a Sunday, the Ford dealership. The city is pronounced Low-Die. The name of the Ford place is unpronounceable.

Day 3, Mon 14 Mar
Call Ford and they will run a diagnostic. They don't call back. Hours later, they say they will replace the transmission for 3600$, the rebuilt transmission will be shipped from elsewhere, they'll call back in a few. They don't call back. And they are no longer accepting calls from low life customers like me. nice, huh.

Clark makes many calls and finds a certified guy who will rebuild the thing for cheaper with better parts. Larry at Lodi Transmissions explains everything in detail and doesn't mind the millions of phone calls he gets from us! He's cool. We have the car towed to him.

Day 4, Tues 15 Mar
Got a rental car (actually a small SUV, evil and earth-destroying, but it drove well) and drove up to Eugene. Got lost twice on the way to our hotel.

Day 5, Wed 16 Mar
Pick out our favorite apartments and go visit. Got lost once on the way back to our hotel. We really like the tiny town house and we get paperwork moving.

Day 6, Thurs 17 Mar
Pay deposit on our new home and get the keys!! Crash the rest of the day because poor Clark is sickly.

Day 7, Fri 18 Mar
Drive back to Lodi. The little red car is done... but fails it's test drive. Won't be fixed til Monday. ACK! Stuck in Lodi, part 2.

Day 8, Sat 19 Mar
Hang out. Visit the bird store next door. Neat. Clark likes a parrot called Angel and I pick up a little yellow parrot named Willy. I've never been introduced to a bird, and I'm intimidated! Their back room has hundreds of exotic birds, parrots, doves, finches, toucans... They make me sneeze. Yep, I've caught Clark's disease.

Day 9, Sun 20 Mar
We are supposed to be home today. Clark has called his work and told them he's stuck and will be missing two more days. We go catch a movie, Constantine, and we both cough annoyingly all the way through.

Day 10, Mon 21 Mar
Go buy a mobile phone in anticipation of the next car break down. Return the rental car. The red car is fixed! at noon. Nap the rest of the day because I don't feel good.

Day 11, Tues 22 Mar
Drive home. The fraud protection people have put a hold on my credit card because they think I'm spending thousands of dollars too much. I agree, but "I'm traveling," I tell them. "My car broke." Car drives great, and there are no further problems.

Home. Tired. Sick. Very poor.
Less than a week to pack up and move.
Did I mention Tired?

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