I got my car back from the mechanic yesterday! It had spent about two months in the shop - mostly waiting for the head to be rebuilt and shipped back from California - and I didn't realize just how much I'd missed it until I got it back.
It was supposed to be ready after six o'clock, so my husband and I stopped by right at 6:30 p.m. only to learn that it would be ready in "about another half an hour." I had company coming, so I left my husband there and headed home to make Spanish rice and Nicaraguan beans to complement the tamales I'd purchased after work.
Some of my guests had already arrived and the beans were nearly ready when I saw a red version of my car pull into the driveway. It turned out there was a problem getting my timing belt to remain at the proper tension, so my husband caught a ride home with one of our friends who happened to have stopped by the mechanic's shop to visit.
Eight other women and I had a lovely party on the deck with the aforementioned food, some wine (including a weird Riesling that came in a pink, cat-shaped bottle), Coronas, and chocolate chip cookies and chocolate cake for dessert. I ate way too much, drank an incredible (for me) three Coronas in a row, and stayed up far too late.
At about 9 p.m., my husband popped outside to tell me that my car was ready! Our mechanic had stayed at the shop and worked doggedly on my car until it was finished. Hubby took my emergency backup car, left it at the auto shop and returned with my car. It was purring like a new car - the rebuilt engine sounds completely different than it ever has since we've owned the car. You'd never guess it was a 17-year-old vehicle.
Unfortunately, my husband didn't know to retrieve the magnetic card that I need to get into my parking lot at work, so I'll have to stop by and get it this morning. I don't mind - it'll give me a chance to take over a "thank you" gift for the extra effort our mechanic put into the job. I was going to bake a batch of blueberry scones, but I'm out of flour so I think I'll just get a selection of pastries from a bakery.
Best of all, the engine rebuild and all the associated labor ended up being significantly cheaper than the original estimate. How's that for good news?!