26 February 2010

Death Of A Wagon

The Aries is no more.

Some time around Thanksgiving the Rampage quit on me again, carburetor problems still (which I think may now be fixed). I took the Aries away from daughter and was driving it back and forth to work.

On the last day in November at about 6 PM I had just pulled into the left turn lane and was about 100 yards from the intersection, intending to turn left at the light. That's when it happened.

A Jeep CJ that was in the straight through lane right beside me decided that it wanted to go into a driveway off to the left side of the road. The problem, of course, was that I was right at it's back bumper when the driver spun the wheel and punched the gas. Contact was made between the Jeep's left rear wheel and my right front bumper.

I stopped dead in the middle of the turn lane, neatly blocking the driveway that the Jeep was aiming for. The Jeep spun about on it's right front tire and came to rest diagonally in the oncoming lane, facing me.

I got out to check on the other driver, but she flatly refused to emerge from her vehicle. She did not come out until the police arrived, so I didn't know if she was OK or not. I shouldn't have worried.

The police arrived at the scene and the driver of the Jeep told a different story (she claimed she was turning from the turn lane so that she wouldn't get ticketed). I asked how I hit her in the left rear tire with my right front bumper if she was in the turn lane ahead of me. The answer I got was something along the lines of "Good point, but since we have two stories we don't know who is telling the truth."

Apparently the Durham police aren't equipped to investigate mishaps. I asked them if they had been sick the day they taught accident investigation at cop school. They were not amused, and I'm sure it did nothing to help my case. No tickets were issued, but her insurance company totaled the wagon.

They will come to get it Monday.

I got more in settlement than I paid for it, including all the work I put into it to get it to run right, and the daughter drove it for two years. It doesn't owe me anything, but I'll miss it.

We never did get around to putting that dragon cloth on the headliner. I wonder what I can do with it.

It looks so lonely sitting out there by the road, all by itself.

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