Saturday, January 5, 2013

Back Story: Winter Driving Tips

Here are three tips having to do with snow accumulation on your automobile:
  1. Never open your sunroof while there is a six-inch layer of snow on the roof of your car.
  2. For your own safety and that of others on the road, remove all snow from your car, including the roof, before driving.
  3. Familiarize yourself with all the controls inside your car; know which button does what before pushing.

Why am I telling you all this? Personal experience dictates that I not let you be exposed to some of the special hazards of winter driving. In other words, don't let happen to you, what happened to me the other night.

We had three reasons to drive up to Springfield on Thursday: we had to pick up a rear wiper blade for the Matrix at the Jeff Wyler Springfield Auto Mall - special order; we have a lifetime of free car washes because we purchased the car there - winter driving had rendered the car filthy; and we felt like availing ourselves of the advertised specials at O'Charley's, just down the road from the dealership.

The parts department was scheduled to close at six. We arrived about 5:45. I picked up the part and we drove around back, hoping the automated car wash didn't also close at six. Lucky for us, it didn't and we were next in line. We fumbled around in the dark, searching for a token, until Amy turned on the interior light. We found one and started looking around to see if we had any extras for next time. There was a weird looking coin in the ashtray that I thought was a token. Amy said it wasn't. An argument ensued until she held it up to the light and proved me wrong.

About this time, the car that had been occupying the wash pulled out and it was our turn.

"Let's shut off the light," I said.

I reached up and pushed the button next to the light and the sunroof promptly slid open dropping an avalanche of snow onto to us where we sat in the front of the car. We sat there in silence for a good two minutes before either of us spoke.

"Why would you want to go and do something stupid like that?" Amy said.

"It's your fault for turning on the stupid light," I shot back.

It took us a half-hour to clean the snow from the interior of the car and get all the ice out of the track of the sunroof so we could get it to close again. That latter task was the hard part. For awhile there, I thought we were going to have to drive home 10 miles with the sunroof open in 20 degree weather.

After a car wash and a couple beers at O'Charley's, Amy could finally laugh about what happened.

"I can't wait to tell my friends at work," she said. "I'm going to call my daughter as soon as we get home."

"I'll have to put it on the blog," I said.



Unknown said...

I've had a car where the map lights and the sun roof were right next to each other, appeared and felt identical. It is a design flaw. Blame the engineers!

Anonymous said...

Too funny!

Virgil Hervey said...

The on/off buttons for the seat warmers in our Suburu are in a place where they are easily activated by accident. It's a very strange sensation when your butt starts heating up in midsummer.