Friday, May 25 - Today we had plans to go to the Elmwood Park Zoo, this tiny, quaint zoo in the suburbs of Philly. We had all intentions of going to the Philly Zoo but were thankfully talked out of it and into going to this littler zoo in the suburbs. My sister-in-law and her 3 kids and mother-in-law were to meet us there...but first we needed to drop off my car and get a rental while they worked on it. I had expressed my distaste for the rental they wanted to give me and was in full hopes they would have worked on getting something better. WRONG!
As I was driving there, my brakes were squeakier than ever and as I went down the hill right before the dealership, I needed to brake for a red light and lo-and-behold...nothing. I felt like I was on ice. There was no traction or feeling of slowing down. I pumped the brakes and eventually came to a stop - well beyond the place I should have. Thank God we weren't hurt! I marched into Bergey's Ford and let them know (maybe not in the most polite way) that there was DEFINITELY something wrong with my brakes and they needed to fix them ASAP. Again, the guy that is my dad's friend was not able to help - but it was probably for the best. I might have embarrassed him by the way I was acting. It went something like this -
I ask, "Okay - what car do you have for me to use while you figure out and fix what is wrong with my car?"
Their response - "We have a roomy Taurus that you will enjoy."
me - "No, I won't enjoy that. It is the same car you offered me yesterday and I did not want it."
them - "Well, due to the holiday weekend, it's all we have."
me - "I live in Columbus, Ohio. I come all the way to Bergey's Ford in Pennsylvania to buy a $35,000+ car, my dad has worked for Ford for almost 30 years, and this is how you treat me? I expect a comperable car. Latch system for the car seats, automatic everything, and a dvd player would be nice. Not a beat-up smelly car. Can I please speak to Scott (the manager). Last time I was here he helped me out and gave me a used demo mini-van that worked perfectly."
them - "Scott is not in today. All we have to give you is this Taurus. The specialist is coming soon and says he can fix your alarm problem in a few hours. We should have the car back to you today."
me - "What about the brakes? Something is severely wrong."
them - "We will check them again, but the tech looked yesterday and didn't find anything."
me (about to be late for the zoo) - "Fine. I'll take the car for today and will come back after the zoo to pick up my car".
After this exchange with the service people, the bitchy rental car lady came for me to sign papers. She asked for my drivers liscence and credit card. Credit card? For what? She says in case of an accident or not enough fuel, etc. She also pressures me to get the insurance which Ford doesn't cover (by threats or how much it will cost if I don't get it and get into an accident). I decline and have to sign a million other times because of it. After feeling like I have been completely treated like crap - I have to sit there and transfer everything from one car to the other (which the dealership is supposed to help - even though they are not allowed to strap the car seats in - they can move them for you). So I have 2 kids, 2 car seats, 2 diaper bags, lunch bags, toys and a double stroller to finagle all myself. What JERKS!
Anyway - off to the zoo which was awesome! A perfect zoo for preschoolers. No elephants and giraffes - but cougars, and birds, and petting zoos, and otters....lots for the kids to see. Plus, tons of shade!!! And really nice, clean play areas that were not overrun by big kids. And ice cream at the end!!! Who could ask for more! My Columbus Zoo pass got me, my sister-in-law and all the kids in for free - which was a huge perk. Very fun afternoon and Gavin and Evelyn were really good the whole time too. That always makes for a nicer day!
After the zoo I called the Ford to see if they were done. Surprise, surprise...they weren't. So I went back to the Bull's and waited to hear from them. A few hours later they called and told me they fixed my alarm thing AND (get this) I needed ALL NEW BRAKES BECAUSE MINE WERE BAD! All new brakes? In a car with less than 7000 miles on it???!?!?!?!? And in a car they said they looked at just the day before and found nothing wrong with it?!!?!?!?? Total a-holes. They probably never even looked at the brakes. Figured I had no clue what I was talking about and said what I wanted to hear. I am so pissed they put me and my children in danger by letting me drive it. THEN they said they wouldn't be able to get to it until Tuesday at the earliest because of the holiday! I calmy told them "Do what you have to do to fix the car - but if you do not have my car for me tomorrow, I am going to Enterprise and renting a comperable SUV with leather, dvd, automatic start, etc and I will send you the bill (this was after Patrick told me I should say that)." Let's just say they had the car fixed first thing the next day. Sometimes it pays to be the squeaky wheel (no pun intended about my squeaky brakes). I still have not talked to the manager and it is over a week after this happened - but I still intend to strongly let them know how I feel!
After that whole fiasco I needed a drink so I met my sister and some of her friends at the new Melting Pot in King of Prussia. Great meal and nice to get some adult time without the kids (although my sister and her friends are almost like kids - just kidding Anna!). By the time I got home, Mommom and Poppop had bathed the kids and put them in bed! NICE! :-)