Caught unprepared…

Well, this was embarrassing!

As anyone that knows me knows, I’m a bit of a fanatic about preparedness. It started way back in my Boy Scout days, but had been kicked up to a “way of life” for the last 15 years or so.

Well yesterday I had a lapse and it came back to bite me!

Long story short, we’ve got an “extra” car that I’ve kept around for those times when a car is in the shop or for hauling duties (it’s a station wagon, roughly the size of a mini truck in the back with the seats folded down).

I’ve been “planning” to sell it, as I don’t use as much as I thought I would, but as with most things I’ve got more plans than time, so it sat for a while. Then it wouldn’t start due to a dead battery (purchased in February 2022, so it wasn’t old). I took the battery in for an exchange on Tuesday and Wednesday I decided to drive it to work (26 miles each way) to get the fluids working through the engine and transmission. The trip to work was without issue, but coming home the dash lit up with red warning lights about “low coolant” and advised me to stop the car.

I pulled off the highway, into the nearest gas station and steam started blowing out from under the hood- uh oh!

I went in to the store (this was NOT a “service station”) and bought a gallon of water to top off the coolant (yes, I know this isn’t correct, but desperate times call for desperate measures, and all that…) and when I went to pour it in, I discovered that my upper radiator hose had come completely detached and had spewed coolant all over the engine. D’oh!

Now, had I been in my regular ride, I would have had fluids and tools, flashlights, etc. But because this was a “spare” I planned to sell, there was NOTHING in the car. Nothing.

Luckily I had a Leatherman multi-tool on me and with it’s little screwdriver I was able to get the hose reattached and limp the car home – still low on coolant, but it never got hot on the remaining 10 miles home.

I kicked myself all the way home for leaving so unprepared. Thank goodness I was able to sort things out with a $10 bill and a multi-tool, at least to get home. It certainly could have been a lot worse.

So, let this be a lesson for you that you don’t have to learn the hard way! Problems rear their ugly heads when you least expect them, which is why you should ALWAYS be prepared. Even if all you’re doing is going to work, just like any other day…

Thanks for stopping by! Be safe out there!

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