During the summer our trusty little car sailed through it’s MOT, with a polite mention from the garage that the rear brakes were getting slightly worn. As we didn’t really have a spare £300 rattling around in our pockets we said we’d get them fixed at a later date… Do I really need to continue with this little story??? Oh ok…
Eventually our rear brakes began to rub, then grind & groan, but we still couldn’t really afford the repair, so with our now very noisy car we soldiered on… On Friday I drove over to Sawley, parked up in the school carpark & had a really nice day teaching. At the end of the day I loaded my car up & went to reverse out of my parking spot. Unfortunately our trusty little car had other ideas. The rear brakes had now jammed onto the wheels & I couldn’t move; well not backwards anyway. I could move forwards, but in front of me was a few trees, a hedge and a path that lead to the nearby Infants School. Try as I might the stubborn little car just wouldn’t reverse 😡 It was time to call the breakdown people…
‘Hi my car won’t go backwards and I’m stuck in a school.’
‘Is your wife there? The account’s in her name and she needs to be there.’
‘Erm… She’s just nipped to check the bus times.’ A blatant lie. Tracy was still at work in Derby!!!
‘Well if she’s not with the vehicle we can’t sort your car out.’
I was now faced with quite a few problems…
- Tracy needed to somehow get up to Sawley before we could attempt the breakdown people again
- We had to collect Sawyer from nursery before it closed at 6:00
- I was stuck in a school with automatic gates & had no idea how long it stayed open for
After a few phone-calls, Tracy was going to hopefully get a lift up to Sawley and my parents would rescue Sawyer from nursery. I just needed to check on the school gates issue. I went back to speak with the head.
‘Hi, I’ve broken down. What time do the gates get locked?’
‘Usually it’s 6:00, but as we’re breaking up for half term today it could be really soon. Have you got breakdown cover?’
‘It’s in my wife’s name and they won’t come out unless she’s here.’
‘I’ll pretend to be your wife then.’
‘I’ve already spoken with them & I don’t know if that will work?’
‘Ok we’ll push you out through the gates then.’
‘The car won’t go backwards. I think the brakes are jammed on. It will move forwards though.’
‘Well just go forwards then…’
So I did… I drove up onto the school path, skirted past a few trees & flower-beds and drove around the playground until I eventually dropped down onto the road again. I waved at the bemused teachers and drove out of the carpark. The car was groaning & grinding as it had before, but I was now fully intent on just getting home. I reached for my mobile and called Tracy with the good news. I needed to let her know before she grabbed her lift up to Sawley…
‘Hi, its moving. I’m out of the school and I’m not stopping. Oh hang on, I’m being threatened by a 20 stone bus driver!!!’
In front of me a bus has pulled over. The female driver had got out and was now stood, rather menacingly, right in front of my car, shaking her fist and hurling some truly shocking language my way 😯 Apparently she was non too pleased to see me driving with my mobile. Had she known about the state of the brakes I’m sure she’d have wrenched me from the car!!! Thankfully she didn’t and a little gingerly I did eventually manage to nurse the car home. Later that evening I gave Tracy a lift to a friend’s house and the brakes momentarily failed completely 😯 x100!!! and we decided that enough is enough… The car would have to be fixed!!!
And as a little postscript to this… The following day I was working up in Chesterfield. I’d arranged a lift up there in the morning, but that car also broke down!!!