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“Chapter Thirteen.  Castles in the Sky”.
Now you all know I am sure just how much I love to have Sang read aloud to me.  She has a real talent for it and some of my very favourite moments are when she and Grrlpup and I are curled up together on the couch and she gives us another chapter of whatever the book du jour may be.  Currently it is Little Women and she makes even that seem a joy  - though the first half of it would in England attract the phrase ‘a load of bollocks!’  What I have never envisioned is that Sang would take out that novel and read it to Grrlpup and I in the dark and by the light of a climber’s headlamp while we all sat in their broken-down Toyota somewhere on I5 waiting for a towtruck to appear.

We had left Portland headed South at around 4:40pm on Saturday intending to spend the night at a Motel in Medford before I was to take them to the start of their hike at the Oregon/California border on Sunday at around noon.  It didn't quite work out thus.  Somewhat south of Roseburg it became apparent that we were having electrical problems.  In due course the lights were so dim as to be of no use and then the engine quit.  We coasted to a stop on an exit ramp and then rolled down to a driveway where we could wait in safety.  Triple-A were called and a towtruck summonsed.  We were only a few pages into said Chapter 13 (you remember – the bit where Lori plays voyeur watching the girls in the woods and then when he is discovered they all play a silly game?) when a large truck bearing the name ‘Caveman Towing’ appeared. 

The driver of said truck was named  Mike and even a cursory glance at him would have told you that he had been carefully selected for this job by Central Casting.  He was built like a brick shithouse and grunted a lot. However he was most efficient and agreed to tow us to our motel in Medford where we were to spend the night.  That this was about 60 miles away bothered him not a whit.  Sang, Grrlpup and I climbed into the truck leaving a very unhappy and stressed Louie sitting on the back seat of the Toyota which by now had been ratcheted up to an angle much like that of the Titanic before it sank taking Leonardo di Caprio with it.

The following morning after a reasonable night's sleep and a hearty breakfast Sang tracked own an open auto parts store that had a suitable alternator a mere twenty or so miles away and of course would be delighted to go fetch it (Whaaaaa….?).  Sang said she had her toolbox in the back of the Toyota and was perfectly prepared to swap out the dud alternator for the shiny new one.  While admitting she had never actually done this before she remarked “Everything I have heard about them is that they are pretty much plug and play…”  I nodded in dumb agreement, confident in her abilities but awed by her chutzpah.  Well. The alternator was fetched and within two hours Sang had that beast up and running once more.  And this, folks, is where you rise to your feet and join me in a standing ‘O’ for that amazing woman.  Further applause should be reserved for what would be referred to in a magic act as “her lovely assistant Grrlpup” who says she didn’t actually do much but who throughout the entire process was cool, calm and a paragon of a helpmate and partner.  Grrlpup's not doing much sometimes amounts to her providing an atmosphere of serene sanity while all around is chaos.  It is much appreciated.

The rest of the day was pent walking around Medford and doing hike-y stuff before we went for Mexican food and I delighted in buying Sang a margarita and watched her get tipsy.

The following day wsa what Grrlpup referred to as Race Day and I’ll write about that after I have had dinner.  So, come back, y’all hear?
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