April 24, 2012

Desaster recovery

Fall has arrived in this part of the hemisphere, and days are getting shorter. Hence, I thought it would be a good idea to leave reasonable early from work, and find a nice spot to watch the sunset. I shouldn't come very far because my rental car had other plans.

Our company provides cars for the stay of their guests, which is nice but comes with a downside. The rental company, known for its low rates, is also infamous for the quality of their vehicles. So, while I was puttering along suddenly the car made funny noises, the dashboard started flickering, and then went black. I had the GPS going showing me the speed, so I continued until suddenly the cage just went completely dead in the middle of the road while I was overtaking a parked truck. I put on the hazard lights and maneuvered the car backwards closer to the curb, until the hazard lights decided to stop working as well. There I was, stranded in a somewhat sketchy area of Auckland suburbs, with dawn arriving. 

I phoned up the rental company... answering machine, then I called the colleague responsible for arranging the rental to get me out of there. He said that he was living too far away but would call another colleague. Half an hour later Steve, a big hat of the company I work for arrived, secured the car, and did that thing again that the Kiwis are so adorable for. He asked if I was hungry (of course by the time he arrived I was) and if I like fish (Taraki or so?), and invited me home to have dinner with his family. 

I missed the sunset but the fish was simply gorgeous, and it turned out to be a lovely evening nevertheless.

14 comments:

  1. Bummer about the car, nothin worse than breaking down in unfamiliar area. Least your pretty safe in NZ. It's a pretty friendly country.

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    1. Indeed, and as sketchy as the area looked, the people were friendly and asked if I needed help. I had nothing to worry about.

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  2. I hate breakdowns and have been blessed with having only a very few. That said, many of them turned out to have some sort of silver lining. Funny how that works.
    ~k

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    1. I usually don't have to deal with car breakdown... usually I get my rental cars from the usual suspects, and they have decent roadside assistance. But it all ends better than anticipated, so no complaints.

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  3. Good to see your company watches out for their own....although they might want to reconsider their preferred rental car source.

    dom


    Redleg's Rides

    Colorado Motorcycle Travel Examiner

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    1. Yeah, I have hear from others that with this rental company it is a hit and miss. Hope they do something about it, but I doubt because they are so dirt cheap.

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  4. It is unfortunate that the car went kaput but at least Steve came to rescue you and you got another home cooked meal.

    Maybe you'll catch the sunset tomorrow.

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    1. If it goes on like this it will become a very nice culinary experience.
      I will definitely work on the sunset issue...

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  5. Given a choice between breaking down in Alaska and breaking down in New Zealand, I'll choose NZ anytime!

    Good story, glad things worked out.

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    1. A breakdown in Alaska would have me definitely worried, but I would make sure to have your phone number on me for rescue ;-)

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  6. It's often the things that happen by chance that make for the best memories, especially when they have a delicious ending.

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    1. There is a lot of wisdom in what you're saying.

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  7. Wow...broken down in another country...but friends and coworkers all around. Nice... ;)

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    1. Hence the worry was quite limited.

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