Thursday, October 13, 2011

Walking on Broken Glass

You might remember that I believe that appliances and machines communicate with each other and plan breakdowns in three's at the same time. (I do not, however, believe in UFO's.)

My dad and I were coming back to our house with a load of things from his house to take to Caton Merchant House where he will be living in a couple of weeks. Pending a physical on the 18th, we are able to move his things in but he cannot until we get the results of the physical.

As I think I've said before, one of our cars is a 2005 Mazda 6 wagon I bought from Alyssa last year. It's a fun car to drive and quite capacious for a smallish wagon.

Anyhow, as I pulled (slowly) over the apron of the driveway, we heard a tremendous shattering sound like glass breaking. I had a couple of thoughts: first, it was another earthquake, and then second, it was a lamp or lamps breaking. This was my hypothesis until I went to the lift gate to open it to remove a couple of things and...the glass wasn't there. It had shattered in nice little safety glass bits all over the floor of the cargo area. The only thing I could think, besides, "Golly gee!  Look at that!" was that the wagon's frame, typically less rigid than a non-wagon, had torqued going over the apron and stressed the rear window to the point of breaking.  That's my theory, anyhow...but I ain't sticking to it.

I called our car insurance company (whose symbol is a red umbrella) and filed about the third claim we have had in 37 years. Not too bad. The agent was sympathetic and asked if anyone were injured. I said just my nerves. She took some information and then recommended three glass shops. One of them had fixed a chip in Becky's car's windshield a few months before in an expeditious fashion so the agent connected me with the scheduler at the glass repair place, whose initials are Safe and Lite. We set up an appointment for 8:30 Wednesday morning.

I taped a plastic sheet over the gaping black hole in Misty's read end and did a nice job of it, even if I did it. Here is a picture of the damage:

And one of my coverup job:

Looks natural, doesn't it?

The next morning I interrupted my scoring to take Misty to the glass shop. The young fellow there frowned and said they didn't have the part.  I showed him the confirmation for the appointment, as if that would create a part. He said it wasn't available in local warehouses and they would have to get one from a dealer's warehouse which would take five to seven days. I was overjoyed (NOT!) but there was nothing to do but limp back home with Misty.

I wrote a scathing email to the glass company about my loss of time and income (a big $20) and sent it off, not expecting much. Some time that afternoon it occurred to me that my insurance covered a rental vehicle. I could get a small truck and continue moving stuff!

I wasn't able to call Travelers until the next morning (24-hour service doesn't apply to glass replacement). I asked about a rental car, but the agent seemed more interested in the idea of a 5-7 day turnaround.  "I don't think so," she said.  She put me on hold while she contacted the shop. She was back on soon with the news that the replacement part had never been ordered, not on Tuesday, and not on Wednesday. She indicated that she would put me on with the manager and my car would be fixed the next day.A properly contrite manager set up an appointment for noon Friday, with a repair time of about an hour. Amazing.

And better yet, a vice president from Safelite called to apologize and offer me free wipers which I had asked for with my inconvenience and missed income. A $22 value, but also a feeling that some companies and their people do care.  That, my friends, is priceless.

No comments:

Post a Comment