Car repair

Alex, the Service Advisor at the car dealership in Arnprior, told me last week when we made the appointment to be there promptly at 8:00 am today (or possibly a minute or so later but nothing more) because the chap whom they commission to correct these mysterious electronic problems can arrive anywhere between eight o’clock in the morning and four-thirty in the afternoon; and, if my car is not there directly upon his arrival the tech guru will simply move on to the next dealership in the area where he conducts similar services.  The dealership itself has been unable on three previous occasions to correct (or, more exactly, to sustain the correction of) the tiny but annoying defect (absent sound system for the turn signals). Initially it was a defect which affected the radio sound as well so I am uncertain how broadly the problem may pervade the vehicle. The continued recurrence of the absent signal sounds has been central to my disturbance; the sina qua non so to speak.

Accordingly I was out of bed this morning at six o’clock, lathered, dressed and fed by 7:10 am when I dutifully departed for Arnprior. It was still dark. I arrived there before eight o’clock and was immediately admitted within the cavern that is Express Service.  For the next two hours I sat in the showroom where the ambience is more alluring than in the reclusive customer waiting room with its matte blue wallpaint. Towards ten o’clock the salesperson with whom I customarily have dealt unexpectedly materialized and offered me a new 2024 All-electric Lyriq Cadillac to drive instead of having to wait for the unpredictable outsourced associate to arrive. She took me by the hand to the vehicle and swiftly instructed me how to put it in Drive, Reverse and Park; and how to turn on the windshield wipers. She vanished peremptorily, leaving me to discover the remaining niceties of automobile functionality.

For those interested in motor vehicles, I will add a note or two. The Lyriq is about the size of the Lincoln Aviator, maybe (probably) one-row shorter, but still bigger than my car. It is noticeably quieter because there is no engine; but, there is what I found to be a disturbing whirring sound.  Perhaps it was just the novelty of electric.  Otherwise, the get-up-and-go is complimentary.  The model we had didn’t have Head Up Display (HUD) which tells me it was lacking in some of the other possible upgrades.  The seating adjustments were fine.  Overall however I prefer my XT4. Nor was this a prejudice I harboured only when driving the Lyriq.  I felt decidedly the same way especially after I regained dominion of my vehicle late this afternoon (it was after 5:00 pm).  Parenthetically the tech guru (whom the dealership amusingly labels a “sublet authorization”) reportedly said he has seen the same problem on the same model only recently; and, that in his opinion it will be corrected by a December 14th GM upgrade which may not be downloaded automatically to the car until as late as mid-January next after which time he asked that I revisit if the problem persists.  As if he needed to add that pleasantry. In the meantime they succeeded to correct the problem manually but it may only be the with the same assurance that it was corrected on the previous three occasions.

Whatever the case may be, for the moment the turn signals make a sound as they should do; and there are no other apparent related issues.  Immediately after leaving the Express Service bay at the dealership (and before leaving the lot) I sat in my car in the dark and conducted my own checklist of curiosities regarding the vehicle This included window and landau roof operations, examination of the tyres and intake caps, modification of the night-time display (because I have seldomly driven at night). Satisfied, I then drove back towards home on the 4-lane highway which at night I find more manageable than the twisting 2-lane back country roads.  Upon approaching Stittsville I detoured to the car wash where I conducted my usual purgative motions. Passing through the wash cycle, Patrick, my favourite employee at Halo Car Wash™, perched at a counter in the windowed office, waved his hand while sleepily resting his head in his other hand. He always appears preoccupied with something, a yearning. Perhaps it is understandably Key Largo or some other part of the Keys where he once lived. There’s a story behind Patrick, I have no doubt.

It approached 7:00 pm before at last I returned home to our little apartment with its soothing paintings, furnishings and warm Christmas cards; and perfected my evening lounging arrangements. By some reckoning it was a placid day; to me, in my particular sphere, at my age and at this time of day it was apocalyptic. It would have been far more nourishing to have dwelt instead upon the magical marvels of the Christmas season, the shimmering blue lights on the outdoor pine trees, the beaconing of the distant burnished fields with their whitened crowns and the mesmerizing tranquillity of the icy narrowing flow of the river. Nonetheless that duty is performed and I am now at leisure to reclaim the silly habits I so cherish. Which reminds me – and honestly I had forgotten until now – we lunched today with Mr. Pho Vietnamese Soup in Bells Corners. The owner’s name is Mr. Tran; and, yes, he is a Vietnamese immigrant (about 20 years ago at least as that he said was when he began his business).  We’ve met his nephew who worked for him one summer years ago.  The young boy has now reportedly moved to Silicon Valley in California where he prospers.

Silicon Valley is a region in Northern California that is a global center for high technologyand innovation. Located in the southern part of the San Francisco Bay Area, it corresponds roughly to the geographical area of the Santa Clara Valley. The term “Silicon Valley” refers to the area in which high-tech business has proliferated in Northern California, and it also serves as a general metonym for California’s high-tech business sector.

The cities of Sunnyvale, Mountain View, Palo Alto and Menlo Park are frequently cited as the birthplace of Silicon Valley. San Jose is Silicon Valley’s largest city, the third-largest in California, and the 12th-most populous in the United States. Other major Silicon Valley cities include Santa Clara, Redwood City and Cupertino. The San Jose Metropolitan Area has the third-highest GDP per capita in the world (after Zürich, Switzerland and Oslo, Norway), according to the Brookings Institution. As of June 2021, it also had the highest percentage of homes valued at $1 million or more in the United States.

Mr. Tran advised he doesn’t care to travel to California any more; he finds the travel experience exhausting.  We shared with him our similar sentiments about injudicious travel.  This of course does nothing to dampen our private aspirations for Hilton Head Island which looms upon our horizon. This evening by coincidence we communicated with BMO Harris where we initiated our US dollar accounts years ago.  Without going into the matter, we clarified some transactions affecting our accounts. The bank made an unscrupulous error which we are now assured by no less than the US agent and the Canadian agent (to whom we were subsequently transferred for maximum clarity) that all is in order.  We didn’t insist on having the clarification in writing because we want to let well enough alone without inadvertently confounding the matter further.  It’s all a bit like car repairs.  Leave well enough alone!