I knew this day would come, but I had not expected it to be today. My car was due or an oil change and a tune-up, and it was time for it to be inspected. I’d made an appointment to leave it with my favorite and trusted mechanic (Joe’s Service Station in N. Reading if you need a good one) at 12:30. When I handed him the keys we went over what was to be done I said I did not expect any problems but if the day were to end with a bill for $600 we should talk first. He said he understood. The car is in its twelfth year and has over 134,000+ miles on it.
A young man working for Joe drove me home. As I walked into the house the phone was ringing. On the display I saw “Joe’s”. I picked up the phone and said simply “This can’t be good news….” It was not. He told me the muffler needed to be replaced (ah, it has sounded louder than usual lately); the part alone was over $300 – the afternoon outing would be about $600. Right now Joe and friends are changing the oil in my car – period. I will think about what’s next, knowing I can go through inspection later this month and fail, if I need more time to think.
My work life has been such in recent years that I have been supplementing my earnings with savings. The remaining savings might support purchase of another car and the house painting that needs to be done this year; and that’s it. Then I will need to either start drawing down on my IRA, or consider signing on for Social Security. While these choices seem daunting, so many others in this world would love to be on the horns of my dilemma. I am blessed. I am rich in ways that are so much more important than those measured by coins and bills. And I am grateful as I begin my Lenten journey.