Tuesday, 5 August 2008

After we finished fixing the bath tub, we had to run off and pick up Littletree from her friend's place. We'd been to the markets in Byron on Sunday, and Littletree ran into a friend, who invited her for a sleep over - her first ever!

So we started off, feeling fine; a beautiful sunny day, a nice drive on a pretty, winding country road through the rainforest. We got just 5km from our friend's house when the car conked out. Poor LittleBlueSky. We were going up a hill and she just lost power.
13 car

At first it seemed like it might be a fuel problem. We stood around, flapping our hands helplessly for a bit, checking different things. While we were there, three different people stopped to see if we need help, but no one could really do anything more than offer us a ride into town.

Eventually someone thought to take off the distributor cap and see if it spins. It didn't. So that solved that: the timing belt had broken, and there was nothing to do but call a tow truck.14 car
16 car

Here's the irony: I'm a member of the automobile association, but my membership had lapsed while we were overseas. Renewing the membership was high on my list of priorities, and I'd even had the papers next to the phone that morning... but, as Murphy would have it, hadn't made the call.

So, we had to call a private tow truck and pay for it - $120! Well, that turned out to be a good thing in the end, since the tow truck guy was really nice, and took us to the only mechanic in town who was open, since there was a Motor Traders' Holiday. This mechanic turned out to be fantastic - a little independent shop. he even managed to fix our timing belt right away, and charged us WAY less than I would have expected.

If we'd called the automobile club, they would have towed us to our usual mechanic back near home (this was 45 mins away), who charges an arm and a leg, and I never really trust anyway.

This new mechanic was so great, we asked him to give us a quote for a job we need to get done on our van, and he said 1/3 of the cost our local mechanic is charging! It's worth the drive, and we get to visit our friends more :)

So even paying out of pocket for the tow truck worked out cheaper than having our membership renewed (which I've done now, by the way).

When we finally got to pick up Littletree, she had been at her friend's for about 30 hours, and her mum, Chrissy was totally snowed under with an extra 2 children, on top of her own 2 and mine! She'd managed to take all 5 kids to ballet classes, i'm so impressed!
16 girls

Chrissy has also written two fantastic children's books, check them out at www.chrissybutler.com I highly recommend them :)


  1. Awwwww, little ballerinas!

    Does LittleTree like ballet?

  2. she LOVES ballet, and has been hassling me to take her to lessons since forever, but i haven't found a good one nearby.
    oh. and i forgot to give this post a title.
    oh well.

  3. They make awfully sweet little Ballerinas! And it looks like you breaking down was a good thing in he end! I do believe there is always a reason for everything! I hope you are getting the van sorted out before you hit the road this week! Perhaps it was a sign????


Thanks for your lovely words, witty banter and entertaining discussion :)