Friday, November 20, 2020

Best Laid Plans

 It’s pretty useless to make rigid plans because something always gets in the way.   The reason for the trip to North Carolina was to sell my brother’s car so we could close his estate.  It was a short trip with two days there.  The cart had been sitting for months so the battery was dead and besides it was stick shift which neither of us drove.  The plan was to have triple A come out and tow it.  I tried to arrange for it before we left, but, well, after getting switched around to different operators, the one for the Carolinas said they didn’t make appointments.

It took all day Wednesday  to fly from L.A. to Raleigh/Durham by way of Charlotte.  The crazy part is that it’s 120 miles from Charlotte to RDU, which meant the plane just about reached it’s flying altitude and began the descent.  It was raining when we arrived and a sultry sort of warm. The news said it was the remnant of Hurricane Eta.  The rain seemed to be over by the time we’d checked into the hotel and gone to one of our new favorite restaurants in Chapel Hill.  It’s a wait on yourself place with middle eastern food.  They have the biggest selection of salads I’ve ever seen. Delicious offerings like carrots with walnuts, grilled pineapple with peppers and curried cauliflower.  The baklava is melt in your mouth.  They have indoor tables with a lot of space in between and the front is all windows that roll up like garage doors, so you’re practically outside.

The plan was the next morning I’d call Triple A and arrange for the tow about an hour before our appointment at the car dealership. Except I awoke to my phone making that terrible warning squawk.  It turned out that Eta hadn’tleft and there was flooding.  The warning said not to travel anywhere unless you were evacuating.  So much for our plans to get the car towed.

The rain had ended by Friday and I had my fingers crossed all would go well because we were going home on Saturday.  It turned out that the AAA service was fantastic. I called and the man came.   It took a bit of time, but he got the car on his truck and we went to the dealership.

Everyone I’ve encountered in Durham and Raleigh has been so nice and the people at the dealership were the same.  There was just a lot of paperwork.  Every state has different rules.  Because the title was in my brother’s name, I had to have proof he was deceased, then proof that I was the executor, my driver’s license and of course, the title.   There was lots of signing of papers and then it was done.

We checked the work going on at my brother’s place.  The painters were busy and the stairs had mostly been repaired.  I breathed a sigh of relief thinking the end was in sight until the painter pointed out that water was coming out of the cleanout drain in front of the place.  Thinking it might be the sewer backing up because of all that rain, I called the sewer people and they actually came right out.  But they found nothing wrong on their end.  Then the painter informed me that the toilet had been backing up and he had shut off the water to the whole place.

I talked to a plumber hoping he could check things out before we left, but well, I called him on a Friday afternoon hoping he’d come out Saturday morning.  He couldn’t.

So I have a backed up sewage system waiting for me to deal with next time. Like I said, it doesn’t pay to make plans.  Particularly now, where once again things are being shut down.  It’s so confusing because it’s so different everywhere.  The one constant is to wear a mask.  American Airlines doesn’t mess around.  They insist you wear one when you get on and keep it on for the whole flight unless you’re drinking or eating.  And if you don’t wear one in flight, you can never fly on American again.  There were two dogs on the plane and no they didn’t have masks on though the emotional support dog sitting next to my son on the plane wasn’t supporting one.  


Sally Morrison said...

I feel your pain. A few years ago we had to close my mother-in-law's estate long distance. Chicago to Charleston, SC. Also encountered a hurricane during the process and believe it or not record breaking snowfall before the house closed. It was a living nightmare. We made it. I hope you have success as well. It sure has been a year of crazy.

Betty Hechtman said...

Sally, a hurricane and snow, wow. It is nice watching the townhouse getting spruced up. You are right about it being a crazy year. I hope the next one is better.

Linda O. Johnston said...

Sounds like having emotional support dogs around could be useful! At least you made some progress. It's a shame, though, that especially under current circumstances you couldn't get it finished this time.

Betty Hechtman said...

Linda, even with current circumstances I still like to travel and fixing up my brother's place is a learning experience, so I don't mind going back and forth.