Sunday, October 23, 2011

The Vacation from Hell - Days 11 - 15 and Postscript

Day 11. Monday, September 12. We pull out today. Rimrock Lake is a reservoir in the Yakima River system, and the water level has been dropping a couple of feet a day while we have been here, just like somebody pulled the plug out of the bathtub! So prudence dictates we retrieve while we still can! We spend the night on the hard at Rimrock Lake Resort.

Day 12. Tuesday, September 13. Jim and Laurie tow us back to Valley Nissan today, I buy Jim one more tank of gas, and then they head home. Naturally, we have a flat tire on our boat trailer on the way home, so we put Jim's spare on our trailer and buy him a new spare at Les Schwab. Then they call to say they had had a flat on their way home, too. So that's how things are rolling!

Daydream is now sitting on the hard at Valley Ford, which is next to Valley Nissan. At least we have electricity. For sure, not in any of our vacation plans though.

Due to colossal incompetence, maybe the dealer's, maybe the freight company's, maybe the Nissan parts warehouse's, the parts have still not even arrived at Valley Nissan yet. Now Michelle is telling us the parts will not be here until this Thursday and the truck will not be ready until Friday! Well, at least we can still have a good breakfast!

Breakfast at the Ford Dealership Lot 9-14-11.JPG

Breakfast at the Ford Dealership Aboard Daydream

We spend a bit of the day looking at new Ford F350 diesel trucks. We are sorely tempted but reason prevails - it would not be prudent! But damn that truck is nice!

Day 13. Wednesday, September 14. We have internet and lots of reading material. We have beer, wine and gin. And we have an ice-maker (OK, talk about want versus need NOW), so we are toughing it out. We are spending the last part of our 2011 vacation on the hard in a dang car dealership!

Day 14. Thursday, September 15. The end is in sight! The parts arrived today, and they are working valiantly to get them installed so we can go home! Here is our view from Daydream's cockpit for the last three days:

View from Daydream for the Last Three Days 9-14-11.jpg
View of Ford Dealership from Daydream's Cockpit

But then the horror story continues...about 4 p.m. Michelle calls me in, they have found a second wiring harness under the first one that also has been sliced and diced or mouse eaten or whatever, and it will now be another week before they can get THAT part. Michelle says we might as well rent a car and head home. She takes pity on us and has her boyfriend tow Daydream to her own house so it will not be sitting unattended in the car lot.

We go to Enterprise, and all they have that they can rent one-way is a Ford F150, but we get the dealer rate on the rental and a big discount on the one-way drop charge. I-90 is a parking lot at Easton. But we finally get home, only to discover that we had both left our keys on the boat! So late at night, in the dark, I have to do a second-story job on my own house. Fortunately, Patty had left the upstairs bathroom window cracked. It is actually three floors up due to the daylight basement, and I hate heights, but I sucked it up, scaled two ladders, and somehow managed to get in the bathroom window. We slept the sleep of the beaten that night, wondering how we were going to get our Hyundai going so we could return the rental truck.

Day 15. Friday, September 16. Technically, the last day of the Vacation from Hell. We spend the morning going to Kirkland Hyundai to get the key code, then to Bona Fide Lock and Safe a few blocks away to get two keys made, all of this adding up to $48. Then we head back to Fall City, only to discover the keys do not work. We head back to Bona Fide's Issaquah store, where certified locksmith Michael Wick puzzled it out for about an hour, and finally was able to make us keys that worked. We get the rental truck returned, but we are still without the Titan, and really do not know when we are getting it back.

Postscript. Michelle called to tell us they got the second wiring harness in, the truck was running, but they had found a third wiring harness for the ABS system and taillights that got fried when the tailpipe fell off. This harness is in, the tailpipe is fixed, and all is good. The bill is $5,100. I had a conference in Coeur d'Alene October 5th through 7th, so we told Michelle we would retrieve the truck on our way home on the 7th, which we did. So we headed out for Lake Powell, and never got east of Yakima. Our truck broke down on September 2nd and we didn't get it back until October 7th. We are out $5,100 for the repair. We are still kind of dazed by it all. I think we need a vacation...

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