This week I had one dilemma after another. The first one was discovering that familiar smell in the garage that spoke of rotting animal. I put the Hubby on it but he could find nothing. Every morning the stench was ripe as I went to the car but by afternoon seemed to abate. I attributed that to the opening of the garage door and the airing out of things. 

Day after day I asked him to check the many mouse traps again, the boat, or the minnows that bubble away in the corner. By weeks end we had the cleanest garage ever — if you didn’t factor in the putrid smell.

Then, because I had orders to complete, I headed to the Door Buster sale at JoAnn Fabrics on Black Saturday. I had every intention of scouring the garage myself when I got home because that familiar aroma still accosted my nostrils. But I would soon have bigger things to worry about because just as I reached Hutamaki, my car started swerving back and forth each time I hit even the tiniest bump in the road. My dilemma here was do I ignore it and get to my sale or do I head home? Want versus need? Sane versus insanity?

Sanity won and I headed toward home, stopping at an auto shop just as a guy was leaving his shift. He said I needed to get it to a mechanic right away and I said “Rat’s, I was hoping you’d say I just needed to push the swerve button, but I can’t find it.” (The swerve button is called skid control and that was the lit-up icon on my dashboard). 

He found it, turned it off, and I drove home so slowly that bikes were passing me. All the while I was thinking, why would turning skid control off help when turning it on was what prevented you from skidding? I pulled into my driveway and left it out there all weekend in case it had to get towed. (It did.)

Dilemma three happened Sunday morning, and technically shouldn’t have been a dilemma at all if common sense were my strong suit. It’s not. I’d scurried around all morning and hopped in the shower hoping to be squeaky clean in time to zoom church service. Just as I finished putting gel in my hair, my device starting making music, the kind that says I’m getting face timed — by Rachel. It was Griffin’s 4th birthday and Rachel usually lets me watch the kids open the presents that I have mailed them. 

But as God is my witness, all I had on was my deodorant. I actually thought maybe I could just crouch down while answering it and slip into my robe surreptitiously but even I knew all the things that could go wrong with that. Still, I didn’t want to miss the call and disappoint a little boy who was poised to tear off wrapping paper. 

One look in the mirror solved my dilemma. I looked like a drowned rat, and that would surely scare Griffin as much as seeing bits of me naked. I would just face time them back after I dressed and dried my hair. 

Monday they towed my car. The mechanic called the Hubby and said one control arm was completely broken off and the other was near to doing the same. He also said the Hubby should come to the shop and see something. I bit my lip worrying over what else they had found wrong with my car as we were already passing $1,600. 

It seems that when the mechanic had opened the hood he found about 20 of those little black birds I had hit — in my engine area. So my nightmare continues. Somehow their little bodies must have blasted through my grill or maybe fell down in under my wipers. I can only assume that it takes tremendous body strength to do their amazing take-offs and therefore were coming at me very fast. I’d been doing 45, slowed to at least 40 in time to watch them, and came to a dead stop when my windshield went black.

Apparently my radiator took a real beating so I’m told I won’t have air conditioning next summer. Well, there’s my penance. I will roast in hell one way or another over this. And I am willing to except it.

It was hours later that the Hubby and I had an ah-ha moment. It started with him telling me how he had told the mechanic he could keep the birds. That caused me to picture him cooking them up for dinner but then realizing they had been in my car for two weeks so they wouldn’t be any good.

That’s when we looked at each other and said. “That’s what the putrid smell in the garage was!” 

debbiehough@hotmail.com

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