Sunday, September 21


I know that many of posts since joining the blog ranks of Show-Me Opinions have been rants and that is not normally my style. You will have to spare me one more, however.

Yesterday, a fellow faculty member and I were on our way back to SW Missouri from a conference in St. Louis. We had been driving quite a while and decided to stop in Lebanon to fill up with gas because it is cheaper there than anywhere else along I-44 for some reason. We pulled in, filled up, and started up the car to pull out again when the engine temperature gauge began spiking all the way to red.

I am not vehicle savvy, but I knew enough to have my friend pull up to the station again and turn the car off. We popped the hood, but this car was a 2008 HHR and nothing was where I expected it to be. We decided it would be best if my friend called her Chevy roadside assistance. After spending 15 minutes talking to a computer, she finally received a live person! Yet, this person had less knowledge of Chevy vehicles than I did! The only thing he could do was to call a tow truck and tow it to the dealership in Lebanon and wait for it to be fixed when they opened on Monday. What help!

I determined right then that our only other hope was to go to the Wal-Mart Tire and Lube two blocks down to see if they did that kind of work -- which they didn't. Yet, one of their car service employees took time out to come check on the car. After he and I looked around, he surmised that it had run out of coolant. He told us he was not allowed to do it, but guided us through the process. Before long we were on our way.

Most car issues while on the road aren't major catastrophes, but rather small glitches that can be solved in 15 minutes. Chevy roadside assistance, however, apparently doesn't really mean what it says. What it should really be called is "Chevy Roadside Computer Maze and Towing" since that is all they wanted to do. Shouldn't there be technicians on call 24/7? Cars don't break down from 9 to 5, Monday through Friday. Many people may gripe about Walmart, but when Chevy wasn't there to help and we were stranded two hours from home, the only place that had someone with the knowledge was Walmart. We are very thankful for that!

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