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Puff the Magic Spectra (Part 1) (repost)

Published September 17, 2011 - 2 Comments
[Originally posted Jan 27, 2009]

Puff the Magic Spectra
Lived by the Sea
A cursed car, with broken parts
And a knack for stranding me….

Hmm…  I wonder what the topic of this post is going to be???

I had an appointment yesterday with my mechanic.  I called him last week and told him that I wanted to bring the car in for an oil change, and that the alternator belt was squeaking quite loudly again, and I would like someone competent to take a look at it.  The car had given me some grief before Christmas when it stranded me twice with alternator problems, and I was assured by both Canadian Tire and Kia that everything was ok now.  Yeah, right.

So yesterday when I went to start the car, all I heard was the sound of the key clicking, and low groan of the engine, and me cursing.  After the second boost in 2 weeks, I was on my way.  Everything was going great.  I had left myself enough time to stop for something to eat, and I would continue on my..

What the…?  Cold air?  I felt a distinct draft in the -24C weather.  Then I looked at the dashboard…. my two favourite lights were glowing..  Engine and Battery…


I turned off the radio, my lights, the heater, and kept a steady pressure on the gas peddle.  At least I was on the way to see the mechanic.  How ironic was that?  All I had to do was make sure that I got there.  Nice and steady.  Don’t stop for anything.  Just keep on…


Smoke started billowing out from underneath the hood…


In the land of make-believe, cars are powered on their owner’s curses.  Needless to say, my Spectra has enough fuel to drive to the moon and back.

I’m not going to stop.  I’m not going to stop.  I don’t see flames.  I’m not going to stop.

I was really betting on it not being smoke, but instead steam or just the fact that it was well-below freezing, and the engine was spewing all its heat into the cold morning air.

I was pleasantly surprised that the car actually drove well enough.  I didn’t experience the jerking and dramatic loss in power that I had fought through in December.  I was able to get to my mechanic’s place without any real problem… except, of course, the smoke billowing out of my engine like a World War II fighter plane being shot down.  I walked into his garage and announced myself.

“Hi.  I know that I’m early.  Guess what???  The car’s outside. There’s smoke.  No power.  I don’t dare shut it off.  What do you want me to do with it?”