Tuesday, July 20, 2010

another one of those days I should have stayed in bed

Yesterday at work, I was on the phone in search of an engine that was supposed to have been shipped to us a week ago. I got the guy I needed on the phone and he assured me that it had been shipped on the 13th and should be in Hilo waiting for me. Uh...Hilo? Hilo is on the opposite side of the island that I'm on and about a 2 1/2 hour drive. NOT where this this was supposed to go. The guy apologized for the screw-up and promised that they'd reimburse us traveling expenses. Fortunately for me, school hasn't started yet, so my friend, Chris, who's starting as a teacher in a week, is currently jobless. He was more than willing to make a few extra bucks driving to Hilo and back. I handed him the keys to the company truck, which is a nasty old beater, but gets the job done, and sent him on his way about 9 this morning. At about 2pm, he calls to say the truck is overheating and giving him problems, but he's doing his best to get back. Around 3 I get the call that I need to come rescue him, and bring lots of water for a very overheated engine. Then, the kicker, he's at mile marker 29 on Saddle road, about 50 miles away. Saddle road is not one of my favorite places to drive - since our island is essentially a huge mountain, most roads go around the edges of it, but Saddle road cuts right through the middle of the mountains and is a blatant example of local corrupt politics. Hawaii island is one big county, the county seat being Hilo, from the top of Saddle road to Hilo, the road is pretty much a 2 lane super highway, complete with street lights, curbs and all kinds of pretty stuff. On the flip side, the Kona side of Saddle road got repaved in some places within the last couple years, but in a lot of spots it's single lane, no shoulder and back to back potholes. It's this side that I had to drive. Meeting up in the middle of all this is a military base, and that's where I found Chris. He filled the radiator and together we sat at the side of the road, talking and listening to the military blow stuff up over the next hill while waiting for the engine to cool. We did this about 3 times before finally the truck wouldn't start at all. Chris managed to strong man push it off the side of the road where we abandoned it for the night. We crammed the engine he was picking up into the car and drove the remaining 30 miles back into town. I finally got home around 7pm. Tomorrow morning, we're going back to give it another shot. The only plus side to this is that Chris is a lot of fun to talk to, so at least there'll be good conversation - a very important thing since the radio in my car doesn't work. Today, we made up for that loss by singing Dr. Horrible songs while trying to fix the truck.

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