Monday, December 15, 2008

blow out...

And I'm not referring to diapers or a hair do! On our way to Tampa we had a tire BLOW out on the BURB! We are all safe & sound now but here is what happened... We left for Tampa on Saturday morning at approximately 915 am. Of course the babies did not eat all their breakfast so we brought along their leftovers for them to eat on the way. Other than that things were pretty good. Brendan was loving having his Grandma sitting next to HIM. He just loves being able to look at her & touch her. It is very funny to watch. He really does love her most! It was kind of chilly out when we left. I decided to take a different course then the one my mom's TOM TOM, a navigational device, told me. Little did I know that this was a BIG mistake! It kept telling me to turn around then it started giving me some CRAZY directions. Like heading WAY N of the lake to get to another road up North to cross the State. AND then I noticed the trip time, 5 1/2 HOURS! Whoa! This was only suppose to be a 3 1/2 hour trip!! I started to get concerned so I called Michael to make sure I was not completely lost. He is like an Atlas of Florida. He knows all the back roads of Florida. Literally! He basically told me that I screwed up & should have just followed the directions the TOM TOM gave me from the beginning. I would now be traveling on some 2 lane roads through sugar cane fields, cow pastures, small towns, etc. He told me that it will be a LONG ride. YIKES! I should have realized then that our trip was DOOMED! We were making pretty good time even with the change of scenery. The babies behaved, YAY! We finally made it to I-75 and were almost home free when we heard this LOUD pop sound. Next thing I know the warning device in the BURB goes off saying "check tire pressure". This has happened quite frequently & we take it in to be checked & they say they could not find anything wrong. After hearing the loud pop I figured it's better to be safe than sorry & I pulled over to the side of the road. We were in the middle of NOWHERE and there I was checking the tires. Yep, we had a blow out. My left rear tire was completely flat & missing half of it's tread. After looking at that tire I thanked the Lord that he kept us safe when it blew. ANYTHING could have happened & we were all in one peace safe on the side of the road. Now to find out exactly where we were. I had NO idea where on I-75 we were. Note to self: Alway's pay attention to the mile markers as you are driving. I searched on the GPS for my coordinates. I know these digits mean a lot from working for the police dept. If you know your coordinates they can give the police a location to come to. Well, that is how it is suppose to work. I called 911, gave her my coordinates & she had no idea what I was talking about. Boy, I must have been in the middle of no where for them not to know that! I looked in my rear view mirror & saw a call box about 50 yards behind me. YAY! Now I had to walk there to find out what mile marker it was. Why did I not pay attention to that sign when we passed it!? On my way there a nice gentlemen stopped to help. He reminded me of my Great Uncle. I was SO happy to see that good samaritan. He told me what city I was in, Punta Gorda, and offered to help change my tire. I just could not have him get out in traffic & change my tire. I know how dangerous it is to change a tire on an interstate & would feel terrible if something happened to him. Especially while changing my tire! So I called 911 again, AAA, as well as FHP, Florida Highway Patrol, to get anyone to come help us! They all told me that someone would be on their way soon. 1 hour later we were still on the side of the road waiting. During this time we had one other good samaritan stop. A nice YOUNGER guy offered to change the tire. I figured it would be safer for him to change it than the older guy so now to get the spare down from under the trunk & to find the jack. Well, let me tell you we removed EVERYTHING from the BURB looking for the jack & tools to remove the spare only to find that we did not have the tools! They sold us a vehicle with no tools! Oh, it gets even better! In order to get the spare down you need a "special" key crank. We did not have that either. Remember this was SUPPOSE to just be a 3 1/2 hour trip & I was not anticipating any of this! Well, the babies ate through almost all of our food! Now we were in the middle of no where with 4 hungry babies! A trucker who did not have a load stopped to help us. He was a Godsend! Not only did he have many tools he even had a box of crackers that he shared with us. FOOD! YAY! Now if we could just get that darn spare tire down! He tried EVERY tool he had & none of them worked! We were doomed! The trooper never showed up, the AAA guy came but he did not have the correct tool either. I figured if I could get a driver of a Suburban to help us we could just use their "tool" & we would be set. That sounds easy, right? I would stand by the road & try to flag down a Suburban. DOo you know how many Suburban's drove by us, MANY! Not one driver stopped! I said to myself right then the next time I see a person in the same type of vehicle I'm driving, STRANDED, with children, in need, on the side of the road, I am going to stop. You never know, they could be in a situation just like I was! All the while my 2 good samaritans worked away at the guide below to try & get that spare tire down. God love em'! Our last hope was another AAA Tow truck that they dispatched to come help us. Hopefully he could solve our dilemma. It ended up taking a tool from the AAA Tow truck driver & one from the Trucker to FINALLY get the spare tire down & changed. 2 1/2 hours later... We were as good as new, well, sort of, just tired & a little worried that we may not ever make it to Tampa. I drove EXTRA cautious & we made it to the shower just a few minutes late. Everyone was wonderful, the food was yummy & the mommy to be looked FABULOUS! I never want to experience a road trip like this again, better yet I hope I never have to endure another...


blow out...

2 comments:

jag said...

Does this mean you won't ever travel our way again?! I want to get together! Glad you're all safe. Next time, we're doing lunch for sure! Take care girl!

Cathy said...

We will get back to Tampa soon I promise!!

Do NOT copy!