Wednesday, April 21, 2004

Beauty and Adventure in One Night!

I will tell you about my day after I skittered away from my office.

I took a nap until about 8:30.

I woke up and had a craving for a walk around the park. So I arranged to go with Rachel. We met and had some late night food at the South Campus Diner. We both had a belgian waffle with strawberry topping and whipped cream. YUMMY!!! We killed a styrofoam tree and sat outside to eat our food. After that we went to Lake Artemesia. It was dark and no one else was there. The lake is situated next to the DC metro and train tracks, so occasionally a Metro Green Liner will shoot across or a freight train will lug itself past the lake. It's very pretty though, and well-kept. Impressive for a place in Prince George's County.

The best part, though, was when we spotted two beavers working on their dam. They were collecting wood and we could hear them gnawing heartily at the wood they had obtained. They would nudge it around and then go off across the lake again, presumably to look for more wood. We stood there for a good fifteen minutes just watching.

After I dropped Rachel off back on campus, I headed home, and decided to get some gas at this really cheap station called University Gas(1.67 Unleaded). I filled up as normal. Then when I got in my car, it wouldn't start! ::grumble grumble:: ::kick tires:: I quickly realized that the problem must be with the battery, because the lights didn't work and the power locks didn't work.

First I asked someone to jump start my car. This worked initially, but as they left I turned on my lights and the car died again. Drats! So now I'm just at a loss. I open the hood again. Another stranger-patron inquires and then suggests more places to check. He diagnoses the problem as being the alternator malfunctioning, and to have the car towed. I get out my AAA Plus card and walk over to a pay phone across the little side road.

As I'm dialing a guy in a car asks if I need help. I did, quite obviously. So I direct him to my car. As he begins examining, another young man saunters up and begins to help out as well. These two concluded that the battery had too much corrosion which was causing problems with the connections. It seems to be standard practice to use Pepsi to clean a car battery's connectors, and so I bought a small bottle of Pepsi for them to use to clean the battery. They used odds and ends of tools and such to wipe out all the build-up. After they were satisfied with their work, they told me to try the starter. And BEHOLD! Everything worked! The first guy left almost immediately(his mother was waiting in his car).

The second guy needed some money. He had asked me in the middle of fixing the battery if I would buy a cell phone from him for $10. I told him at the time, "After we're finished." This was so I could get him to try his best to fix my car, and not do anything screwy. Since the car worked, and they saved me a lot of time and money, I gave him $15 for his service and took the phone(which I don't care about anyway). It seemed a fair price for what he did.

Oh yeah, did I mention: God saved the day!(again)

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