So this past Thursday, I get all three kids, school bags, lunch boxes, diaper bag for Princess, my jeans for the tailor, and a bag of stuff to return to Target, all packed in the car. We are SO close to being on time today. Whoo! Hoo!
I go to crank the van and Rerrr, Rerr, Rer as the dashboard lights slowly fade to nothing. Are you kidding me? NOT a dead battery. I jump out of the car as the boys let me know that the movie is not on. Duh! More than likely, THAT is the reason for my dead battery. I had noticed the sliding van door was open as we entered the garage. Most likely that means one of the boys had gotten in the van yesterday while we were home all day for Veteran's Day, left the door open, which lead to the quietness of my engine this morning.
Ugh! I opened the hood, grabbed my charger pack and hooked it up to the battery. Tried the starter and Rerrr, Rerrr, Rerrr. Nothing. OMG. Seriously? I grabbed the house phone and tried my next door neighbor. "Are you busy? Can you please drive over?" I frantically start moving all the stuff, no junk, ok, I admit, its just a bunch of crap out of the way, so that my neighbor can pull her car far enough into the garage for my jumper cables to reach.
She opens her hood and I am surprised by the size of her teeny little battery. Hmmm. That's odd. Oh, well. Let's get this going. I hook up red to positive, black to her frame, then red to my postive, black to my frame. We start her up, then me, and again - Rerrrr, Rerrrrrr, Rerrrrr. It's getting worse. My neighbor then says, "I think the black on mine is supposed to be hooked to the negative charge." Duh. Ladies rule. We can do this! I'm sure that's the problem. We try again, same thing. Uggh. Then she mentions that maybe it has something to do with her car being a hybrid. Hmmmm. As we stand out in the driveway discussing, we see my otherside next door neighbor out in the yard with his dog. We yell him down, explain my dilema and have him drive over. Somewhere in all this, I called my dad a few hundred times who makes sure I have connections in the right place and wonders if my starter could be loose?
While all this is drama is going on outside the van, I've got even more drama inside the van. My screaming kids, all still buckled into their seats asking "what's wrong with the movie", "why aren't we moving", "why is the car broken", "mommy can I get out now", "mommy are we going to preschool", asking my neighbor they've seen a bagillion times, "What's your name again?"
So my other neighbor pulls in, verifies with me that red is positive, black is negative, hooks up to his battery, then to mine, again n.o.t.h.i.n.g!!! What the heck??? In fact, it is getting worse!! So I politely thank a second neighbor and send them both back to their days and resolve to being at home with all three kids for another day. My dad on the otherhand, has plans to drive almost two hours to come help me, because he can't have his baby and her babies be without a motorized vehicle in the event an emergency were to arise.
"Wait" I say. You see, I have one more trick in my back pocket. Not my husband...are you kidding? He is in meetings from the time he enters his work premise until the time he leaves. And because I have emailed him way too many full size 8 MB pictures of the kids, my email and full i.p. address (so I can't make up new emails - trust me, I've tried) have been blocked so that I basically cannot call him or email him the entire work day!
My last option, is my surrogate husband - A neighbor friend, golf buddy, and co-worker of my husband. One of those "Jack of all trades, master of none" kind of guys that can rig most anything to work. So I give him a call, thinking maybe he is off work today or working from home? Turns out he is off on vacation, and currently leaving BJ's wholesale club, headed home.
While I wait, I let the kids out of the car. The boys start playing in the yard in the windy and drizzly remnants of the nor'easter that has lingered for DAYS. I then call preschool to let them know we aren't coming today (since they are more than an hour late into a 3.5 hour school day.) Just as I'm getting off the phone, Big Sticky announces that Little Sticky has pooped in his pants. Well that's just what I needed right now. And to top it all off, I'm about 2 hours past a good cup of coffee. So I get Little in the house, take his dirties off, clean him up, leave him bare bottomed as my third neighbor has now pulled up.
He opens his hood and I gasp with excitement at the size of the battery under the hood of his SUV. It's twice the size of the hybrid, and a third as large as my own. He hooks the cable to his battery with the car cranked, I walk over to my battery and ZAPP!! I squeal as sparks fly. Apparently, I crossed my positive and negative, a big no-no. Anyway, we get it hooked up, and VOILA! It works first try! Yipee! I am ecstatic! An hour and a half late, but ecstatic!
I then run upstairs, get Little some clean pants. Get all the kids back in the car as fast as my arms and legs will allow me and we are off with the movie now playing. I call preschool back to sing, "We're com-ing!" I know they will only get to stay at school for just under two hours, but their lunch is packed and two hours is just enough time to drink a suuuuper large cup of coffee, head to the tailors, and the grocery store, all without preschoolers!