Monday, August 20, 2007

golden moments

arrived in berkeley tonight. a few hours later than planned due to a nearly explosive car situation. the dear 84 tercel wagon, affectionately known as "the gold nugget" was nearing the destination, when hesitation and bucking began to occur at high RPMs. the car was already loaded to the gills with a clampett-esque precarious pile tied exhaustively onto the roof and the newly hatched engine troubles threatened to make the hills coming into berkeley impassable. uncertain if i should pull over or not, i figured that maybe i could eke out the last few miles at ridiculously slow speeds, dirty looks from speed demon californians be damned. but then, the bucking reached bronco levels, i heard a pop, and the car suddenly sounded like the muffler fell off... i calmly pulled into the emergency lane and the car died. red dash warning lights galore. i coasted to a stop in the grassy, glassy freeway shoulder. ugh.

i get out, crouch down on the side of the car as semis and aforementioned speed demons whip past me mere feet away. i look into the dim underbelly of my car, and i see the catalytic converter... a bulbous protrusion in the exhaust pipe that looks like a wimpy anaconda swallowed a wiener dog... and it's glowing red hot!

i back nervously away. uncertain if something is about to explode. grit and exhaust clinging to my throat, a mental tally of tow charges and mechanic fees ringing in my head. then i settle down, take another look, and see where a 15" silicon hose, melted by the extreme heat, has disconnected from the catalytic converter. after a few minutes of squirming under the car, duct tape and wire in hand (praying that an errant driver doesn't swerve into the emergency lane and clip my extended and vulnerable legs) the hose is reconnected. i get in, turn the key, and i'm off! i limp at 45mph 30 minutes down the freeway to my blessed ashby st. exit. those were very long miles.

moving into the new room. pictures and videos soon.

miss portland and sage and albert, but sense big possibilities here.

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