Traversing the last year I’ve acquired a handful of new readers. Blogging your cancer journey will do that. Most of you would agree, I yearn to focus on those things praiseworthy, and not just complain.
If you’re one of my readers who cares to pray for our family, please read on. In the midst of being on a disability income, we continue to praise the Lord for how He cares for us, in spite of the pitfalls of life; financial or otherwise.
With that said, I’m currently thankful to the Lord for giving me the clarity to see his hand of provision and care, in the midst of a slowly dying automobile.
Our family vehicle is a 2002 Honda Odyssey. We bought it new. We paid it off. We’ve driven nearly 180,000 miles in it; once to Texas and once to Washington. It has served us well. It should have served us well, we paid more for a brand that is considered dependable and long-lasting.
At about 130k miles, we had a new timing belt installed, but the tensioner was not replaced and failed very quickly thereafter, thus resulting in a seized engine. So, the dealership and Honda of America picked up 88% of the tab, and we kicked in the rest…for a top-end rebuild.
From then on, our loved Honda never had it’s telltale Honda purr, coming from under the hood. The engine sounded more like a redneck’s tinkered-with ol’ pickup truck. Fast forward 4 years and 50k miles, and the unhealthy sounds have turned into a legitimate knocking.
I should take this chance to mention that we have at our side a longtime friend of the family, with legitimate professional experience with these matters, and he is advising us and guiding us. Please don’t read this post and think I’m solely complaining or lacking in wisdom about our choices.
With the super loud knocking, and a check engine light on again, I took the Honda to another shop in town. They determined that the engine was misfiring all over the place, and that one of the cylinders appeared to have lost compression.
With more information, I returned to the dealership. I now had the knowledge that our engine was near its end. We spoke with the service manager, and laid out our problem. He committed to having our van properly diagnosed, and we left it with him over the weekend. (That was last Friday.) They determined that indeed our van needs a new engine. It’s what the factory-trained technicians refer to as “toast”. Because Honda of America had taken some responsibility for the last rebuild, they were given the opportunity to help again. They decided to commit to a portion of the rebuild, because of our longtime Honda loyalty. Considering our loyalty to the dealership, they decided to help offset the costs as well, resulting in our responsibility being much lower than if we’d footed the whole bill…to get a new engine installed in our beloved minivan. Seems like a good deal!
Once again, the Lord has brought us into an extended community of people willing to help us out, while we’re in this tight spot. Dealing with several people in a dealership, with the back and forth, can be frustrating. However, I sat down with Fabian, the General Manager, and I believe that he took the time to listen to me, and consider our situation. Sometimes, the best business decision is considering your customer’s unique situation and doing the best you can to accommodate.