This hasn’t been the best week, and it’s not over yet. I’ve had printer problems, tire problems … and then there’s death. That one kind of puts everything else into perspective.
Somehow, I have become the go-to gal for printing issues at work. I’ve been trying to help a few people out, but it’s frustrating because some of them are almost completely computer-illiterate and just don’t understand the concepts. Or even the language. So I ended up offering to print out some needed documents for these people rather than do any more trouble-shooting and explaining and explaining and explaining. I was just so exasperated, and it was really hard to reign in the nasty, sarcastic comments that were bubbling up in my brain.
So I started printing. And then I jammed up the printer. I had to unjam it, because I think when I added paper to it, I didn’t fluff it correctly or chant the correct spell or sprinkle the right fairy dust. It took me almost 45 minutes to open up what I could and fish the crumpled pages out of the minuscule slit they were stuck in. But I did it.
Then, on my way to work the other day, some red warning symbol suddenly appeared on my car dashboard screen, with an accompanying warning bell. Of course, my heart leaped into my throat and I started shaking (yes, I am just that easy to upset). I pulled over and yanked the car manual out of the glove box and frantically flipped pages till I found the explanations of the symbols. It seemed that I had a flat tire. Oh.
I got out of the car and walked around it, checking each tire. They all looked absolutely fine to me. Still, I hadn’t gone too far from home, so I returned there. I read through the car manual once again, this time with better light and less panic. There was a paragraph about the tire sensors needing to be reset sometimes, and I thought, That’s it! I had snow tires put on in October, so obviously the sensors needed to be reset to those new tires. I continued reading the explanation of how to do it, then I did it, then I could finally get to work. I arrived a bit late, of course, but at least I got there in one piece.
Once I returned home after work, I checked all the tire pressures. Well, the right front tire barely registered a reading on the gauge – but it still looked fine! I hopped back in the car and gingerly drove to the gas station down the block to put air in the low tire. I reset the tire sensor and drove back home, quite pleased with myself.
The next morning, that tire was definitely low. I could see it. So, I ended up taking DD’s car to work, intending to deal with the tire after work. And after work, it was pretty much completely flat. There was no way I could drive it even around the corner to the nearest tire store. So I called BCAA. A very nice man in a towtruck pulled up in front of my garage within a half-hour. He examined the tire in question and quickly spotted the screw stuck in the tread.
Oh. I’d driven over a screw. That explained a lot. The man pumped the tire back up for me and admonished me to get to the tire place right now, because the air was whooshing out of the tire quickly and audibly. So I did. And about 45 minutes and 32 dollars later, my tire was repaired. (Good thing it was a snow tire, because my summer tires are run-flats, which can’t be repaired and cost something stupid like 500$ each to replace.)
Which brings us to death. Two kids who attend my school, a 10-year-old girl and her 6-year-old brother, lost their dad a few nights ago. He was only 48. He was really into fitness, went to the gym every day, and played almost every sport imaginable. He had a heart attack while playing hockey. Their mom is a special needs assistant and sometimes works in my school, so many of us know her as well. It’s hit our school pretty hard. The funeral is tomorrow afternoon. I, and a number of other teachers who know the family well, will be attending. I’m not looking forward to it. But then, neither are that mom and her two young children, I imagine.
Like I said, I think this week’s events have been put into their proper perspective now.