George has been gone for almost one week now. It has felt much longer. I am SO. BORED.
Believe it or not, George being gone seems the least of my anxieties right now.
Summer school has provided a workload I did not expect to be so heavy and I am frantically trying to complete assignments every night after coming home from work.
The most upsetting thing I’m dealing with now ties in with this picture of George, covered in oil from working on my car…
We took my car to a mechanic, who had been referred by another auto place we’d done business with before. We simply needed a small part replaced and while George had tried for many weeks to do it himself, he simply could not find the part on the car that needed replacing. So we took it to this guy…
About four days after leaving the car with the mechanic, we called to follow up and find out if my car was ready for picking up. However, the mechanic replied that he had tried very hard to find the part we’d given him from the dealership, but he couldn’t find it and would have to order another. We were a little baffled by the mechanic’s inability to keep track of something that we had left on the passenger seat for him, but we were patient and told him we’d call by the end of the week.
When we finally called, we also added how George would be leaving the country very soon and we would need to get the car as soon as it was ready. The mechanic said it would be ready Tuesday, the day before George would fly away. While Tuesday would be very, very busy, we didn’t have much choice in the matter and told him we would be there at 3:00 in the afternoon to pick it up.
After dropping George off at the mechanic’s lot, I had to leave because I was scheduled to be at work in less than an hour. While driving to work, George called and said, “He didn’t charge us anything because it took so long!” Of course, I felt like that was fair, considering he’d kept our car nearly two weeks and it was only expected to take about three or four days.
Later that night, after getting home from work, George was busily packing to leave at 5:30 in the morning, which was only a few hours away. Eventually, he had to go out to my car to look for anything he might need to pack. He was out there for quite a while…
When he came back into the apartment, I saw a look on George’s face I had rarely ever seen. It was an angry expression and it even took him a while to say anything when I asked him, “What? What’s wrong?!”
“They took my tools,” he said.
I was stunned. George had been working on the car for weeks and had been keeping the tools locked in the back of my car instead of carrying the heavy thing back and forth to our apartment, which is upstairs. The tools were a very expensive gift from my dad, who wanted George to have these tools for doing exactly what he had been doing–fixing stuff. George had never owned anything that wasn’t a hand-me-down, so for him to receive a gift worth nearly $450, he was extremely grateful and proud of what he had.
No wonder he was so angry. Later, we discovered the ashtray, which had a few stray dollars in it, was also gone. And then, it dawned on me the part we’d ordered from the dealership which the mechanic couldn’t find was probably something that had been taken as well.
Because George was leaving so soon, we knew we had to file the report as quickly as possible, despite how late it was. We called the justice department and met with a police officer in their parking lot. After explaining the situation thoroughly about three times, we were finally able to return home.
Since then, I have returned to the mechanic’s lot and explained to him the situation. He says the items were never in the car because he never saw them. However, he also said that he didn’t enter our car until a few days after we had left it with him, so who’s to say someone who worked there didn’t get into it?
“That’s impossible,” the mechanic told me. “These boys have worked for me for more than 10 years. They couldn’t do it.”
“But they had access,” I told him.
“They didn’t do it,” he was getting very defensive.
When I inquired about his insurance, he said he didn’t have any. So I gave him the receipt of things that were in the toolbox, amounting to the worth of the toolbox and the tools inside, and asked him to get back to me within the week. He said nothing had ever been stolen in the 23 years he’d been running his business, but I didn’t back down. I just told him to contact me by Monday.
Which is tomorrow. So this is my current predicament. I’m planning on leaving early next Saturday morning for Boston and so I’m trying to get this taken care of now, even while George isn’t around to help. Either way, if I have to take the guy to small claims court, I will, because I absolutely HATE that someone there took George’s tools.
I swear, stealing is one of those things that makes me most angry. You can’t help feeling taken advantage of and in some way, condescended to.
I don’t give up easily. Just watch. Next time I write about this, you’ll see a picture of the toolbox, safely back in our possession.