Musings from the padded room

söndag 17 april 2011

On the subject of being busy and other musings

Let's start off by talking about my car. It has been an active topic of discussion within my circle of friends and family (well, mostly my mother and me) for the last few weeks.

Anyhow, since the heat fan decided to give up a few weeks back I have discovered that I can still get some warmth into the car by changing some of the settings for the fan. It won't blow out any hot air but opening the air vents fully, combined with some other things, while driving on the highway to the stables I've found that the warm air from the engine area is pushed into the car coupé, thus keeping the worst of the fog off the inside of the wind shield. It's not a long-term solution, of course, but it works for now.

On another, related note, however: I'm starting to give up on ever finding a workshop I can trust! During a previous visit to the work shop the mechanics told me that the heat fan was in a bad shape and would have to be replaced, which is why I bought a replacement for it now that it had, in fact, gone and died. So, thinking all was well and it would be fixed I took my beloved car to the workshop this week. Sometime during the afternoon that day the work shop called me...

Apparently they had tested both the heat fan itself and the fan module (and charging a ridiculously high price for doing it) and found that nothing was wrong with them! So there I'd bought the replacement, which wasn't free y'know, completely unnecessarily. They then went on to say that most likely there was a problem with the electrical wiring which resulted in the heat fan not getting any electricity.

However, as they said, they'd only planned for the time it would've taken to replace the heat fan. When they'd decided it wasn't necessary to replace it they then went on to fix some completely unrelated, marginally important things (which, granted, probably needed to be fixed anyway sooner or later) and in the end they "ran out of time, so they couldn't check the wiring".

In other words, not only did I, on recommendation from that same work shop, buy a completely unnecessary replacement for a working heat fan... I also left my car at the work shop for a full day and picked it up afterwards, without getting the actual problem fixed. And on top of that I had to reschedule for a date at which they could check the wiring.

Long story short... As it looks right now, if I continue using that work shop, my heat fan won't be fixed until sometime in early May, at the earliest, and I had to pay for them fixing things I'd never asked them to fix. Not to mention that they failed to notice that one of the light bulbs at the front of the car was broken and should've been replaced. I mean, since they were at it, fixing things unrelated to the actual problem, why the heck couldn't they then fix the lamp?

So, needless to say, I am quite disenchanted with car work shops. Once again. I thought I'd gotten over all that when I got rid of my previous car *deep sigh*.

The thing is, though, that I will still have to take my Toyota to the work shop. Not only because I have no choice, I need a working car since I can't get to the stable where I have my horse otherwise, but also because, despite the troubles, I still love my little red pebble. I feel happy when driving it, I feel content and, most importantly, I feel safe. It's old but it's comfortable, and cute, in a washed-out, quaint way. I fall more and more in love with it as time goes by.

As an example:
This time last year, when I still had my previous car, and when the snow was turning into deep, nasty slosh, 6 times out of 10 I barely got out of the parking lot at the stables without asking for help to push the car since I got caught in the slosh.

This year, with the Toyota, I haven't had to ask for help even once. Sure, I've still had to have a bit of speed when braving the slosh but I've gotten free and away on my own every single time. My Toyota also feels much steadier and safer when driving on icy winter roads, I don't have to worry about being blown off the road every time there's a slight gust of wind and it feels like I have a much better overview of the road. I also think that the full beams on my Toyota are much better than the ones on my previous set of wheels. All in all, to me the Toyota is a better car, which makes me more motivated to grit my teeth and endure the annoyances of work shops in order to fix it.

With my previous car I used to fantasise about the day I would get rich and could buy a new car. I would fix everything that needed to be fixed on the old car... and then push it off the quay into the river. With my Toyota on the other hand... even if I bought a new car I have a feeling I would still, if possible, want to keep my little red pebble around. I'd fix everything that needed to be fixed and then use it for weekend driving or just for some evenings of nostalgia. I love it that much. Besides, I've always dreamt of having a Toyota.

And now, on a completely unrelated matter:
Apart from car business I've been working as hard as I can to find a new job. It feels like I've sent out applications to just about every place there is (which probably is quite the overstatement) but either I hear nothing from them or I get rejection after rejection. I'm seriously starting to give up hope of ever finding work that suits my qualifications and education. I really don't want to work in sales and if I can help it I don't want to work in any stores either. I want a creative, engaging job where I get to write and create, delve into interesting topics, rack my brain for the best wording or the best visual and where every new task is different from the one before it.

Lately I have also been thinking, quite seriously, of starting my own business. I've already narrowed it down to a few names I would like to call it and I already know what I will be offering and to whom. I've also decided on what type of business it will be. Now the problem is to solidify those plans in a way that will ascertain a successful start, and to deal with the bureaucracy. So far I've borrowed a pile of books on the subject of starting one's own business, I've bookmarked a volley of websites and I've even applied to participate at an information and seminar day for those who are thinking of starting their own company. Well-informed is well-prepared in my book, after all. Hopefully I will be able to take the step into realising my company in the near future. Please, do wish me luck!

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