Day 46. 97,476 words. Today I have a ton of work to do, then tomorrow we have a bit of a department training day on the cards which should be a relaxing end to the week. After that, game night with some friends. And winter holiday begins! I’d forgotten what it was like to have normal holidays.
Yesterday we went to pick up the car from our mechanic, and went through the usual enjoyable ritual of him proudly showing me pieces of rusty or worn-down or otherwise perfectly normal-looking metal, and explaining that they’d needed replacing and it was a miracle the car was still running. And me nodding and saying “well done.”
Some of yesterday’s bits and bobs. Sure would hate to try to drive without one of those.
Anyway, our dear old trusty Volvo, who has been nicknamed Börge, made it through another annual check-up at minimal cost, and seems to be running fine. Which is good news because it means we don’t need to buy a new car this week.
On our way home from the mechanic, Mrs. Hatboy was ahead of me on the road and we were making our way through the little winding streets of the village (I was in my in-laws’ car, having borrowed it to drive both myself and Mrs. Hatboy to the mechanic’s in order to pick up Börge in the first place). We went past a BMW coming the other way and Mrs. Hatboy and I went to one side of the road. BMW went to the other side, and evidently went a bit too far because suddenly he was in the ditch.
For fairness and context, it’s hard to tell on this particular road because there are mounds of snow and no markers, but generally yeah, just scrape by and try to stay inside the ploughed bit. Mrs. Hatboy and I went as far as we could only our side, right up against the snowbanks. So it wasn’t really anyone’s fault. In fact, it was even easier for me to get past because by that stage BMW was two wheels deep.
Mrs. Hatboy, in the lead and not noticing any of this, carried happily on into the village. I parked (after driving past him, seeing his predicament and going “aah ha ha ha, you done fucked up”) and went over to help the poor dude, whose BMW had a rear-wheel drive and was basically just vzzzzzzzing himself deeper and deeper. I didn’t have a tow cable in the car, on account of it being my in-laws’ car as mentioned, and them having emptied it out completely in preparation for trading it in. So I made a few calls.
Eventually – and BMW was beginning to sound a bit anxious about how many people I seemed to know who owned tractors, and how many of them were either neighbours or family members or both – a local swung by with a four-wheel-drive and pulled BMW out of the ditch.
 He was probably already nervous when I got out of my car and came over to help, actually, and the long-way-from-home-city-boy vibe probably didn’t help. I resisted the urge to ask him if anyone knew he was out here.
BMW was very grateful and made it rain with wads of cash.
No, he really did. My fellow villager was embarrassed at the amount and made him put half of it back – he even tried to give me some, when all I’d really done was park my car and stand on the side of the road scrolling through Facebook for ten minutes – but at least he got something for his trouble.
The moral of the story is, if you see a BMW driver in a jam, laugh at him a bit … but then help. Because he might be the one BMW driver with a sense of fair play.