There are several (okay… two) of us in our family who get really attached to our vehicles, name them and keep them forever or until someone sells them out from under us, literally. I have a 2002 Pontiac Aztek which I liked right from the moment I first saw it, to the surprise of my husband and the car salesman. It’s the color of a school bus and has a shape that was very cutting edge in 2002 – so much so that not enough were sold and they quit making them a few years later. I’m thinking it will be a pretty valuable relic someday. Because of the color I’ve called it Sunny and also because of the color I’ve never had problems finding it in crowded parking lots. Sunny has aged well over 10 years and 160,000 miles and is still a pleasure to drive, but has had a few electrical/computer quirks. One of them was that the windshield washers quit pumping fluid to my dirty windshield. I’ve lived with the problem for over six months, always carrying Windex and a roll of towels along, or settling for just being barely able to see.
A couple days ago my AC quit blowing cold (UNACCEPTABLE in Florida) so I took Sunny over to my favorite mechanic, Pat. Pat is a car’s best friend, and I like to think he’s one of my best friends too. He refilled my cooling fluid and even divulged his secret supplier of the stuff, Big Lots! He sent me down to get a couple more cans of it and put it in for me. While he was at it I asked if it would be too much of a pain for him to look at my windshield washer. He had me turn on the engine and work the washer switch while he did his magical procedure – hitting it with a board – yes. And it immediately started working. It’s something akin to kicking the Coke machine… Another mechanic could have charged me big bucks and given me a story about all the things he had to replace to fix it, but not Pat. And he has always been this way. I’m just saying that this is why Sunny and I consider him a “must have” mechanic.
P.S. Pat only works on a few cars now in his spare time after school. He teaches at the local tech school and is training more mechanics all his tricks, including how to use boards to fix washer pumps. Yea!!!