Ok, not quite... but almost...
This is a multi-step process... Happiness, therefore, comes in increments.
The bubble is swelling... I hope it doesn't burst, but, instead, floats on the breeze...
I went to Wodonga a couple of weekends ago. Without boring people with the details, I have managed to secure a property for my mother to live in. Bring on June - I'm free to be homeless then! *doing a happy dance*
But, what a doozie of a week ensued!
Firstly, my car was the victim of a hit and run...
I went to a meeting at Victoria University (Flinders St, Melbourne), parked my car on Flinders St in the disabled bay (which I'm allowed to do), and when I returned a couple of hours later, was elated to find that my right mirror...in fact, the whole assembly, was hanging by a couple of wires.
I was starting to wonder how much these assemblies cost, when I spotted a little piece of folded paper tucked under one of my windscreen wiper blades. I removed it and found a little written note from a witness to the accident. It said something along the lines of:
"I saw the car that hit yours. The number plate is ****** (dark blue ute). They didn't stop."
Ahhh... gotta love those ute drivers! :) This wonderful person wrote her name and phone number at the bottom of the note.
I got in my car, hoping that the licence plate given to me was correct. On the way out of the city, I was also starting to feel overwhelmed as I realised how much work lay ahead of me.
I should explain...
Earlier that day, I also called Vision Motorsport in Ferntree Gully. They're a KTM and Suzuki dealership on Burwood Highway. The reason I'm giving so much detail is because they screwed me over royally, and they deserve the slander I'm about to embark upon via this blog post.
To refresh people's memory, I had an accident on the 30th of January, 2010. VisionMotorsport didn't fax off a quote to my insurer until the 3rd of March, 2010. This fax wasn't received by my insurer, funnily enough, until the 9th of March. An assessor was sent by my insurer immediately after receiving this fax - he/she went to VisionMotorsport on the 12th March. I waited for word. Nobody called me, so a week later (on the 19th), I call VisionMotorsport to hear of the progress on my bike.
The response I received?
"Ummm... there are no parts. Your bike hasn't been touched."
I was in shock, almost unable to speak...
"Sorry? Is there an industrial dispute of some kind?"
"You're unable to get parts from Suzuki?" I ask, trying my best to wrench some useful information from this unresponsive lump called a human being.
"Dunno... there is just no parts."
What a cooperative, grammatically incorrect fellow I was dealing with... I wanted to throttle him.
"You mean to say that you can't find any Suzuki parts in Australia for my bike?"
"When do you think this will be resolved?"
Again... the helpful retort: "Dunno..."
I was livid.
"Ok, thanks", I managed to mumble and hung up. I could see there was no point in sorting things out with this neanderthal.
I left work for my meeting at VU in the CBD, and tried to compose myself on the lengthy trek from Wantirna to Flinders Street.
Having decided on a plan of attack by the time I reached my meeting, I was calmer and ready to do some more work to resolve the issue of not being able to ride my friggin' bike. My meeting was good - enjoyable and quick. I was in a better mood by the time it finished... then, I return to my car to find that I was a victim of a community-minded member of our society. Thank goodness for the good samaritan that left a note describing what had transpired.
For the second time that day, I was livid.
To make matters worse, my disabled parking spot was in a Clearway zone after 4.00 pm. My meeting finished at that time, and I got to my car at 4.05 pm. As i was trying to rip off my dangling mirror, a tow truck pulls up alongside me. The driver calls out to me - he wants to tow my car away.
I loudly exclaim that my car was the victim of a hit-and-run, I'm trying to remove the mirror that's dangerously hanging by a thread and that I will leave momentarily. Not good enough... the tow truck driver insisted that he wanted to tow my car away. That was the final straw for the day.
"Look... (insert menacing look from me here) I'm in a DISABLED parking spot, I've returned to my car to find this and I'm trying my best to rectify the situation quickly - I am thoroughly aware that the Clearway started 7 minutes ago! I'm going as fast as I can!"
"Nah, love... Gonna have to tow ya..." was the response from my "Strine" friend.
I was about to burst a blood vessel.
"Ok... if you're gonna tow the car, you'll have to take a disabled female with you... strapped to the bonnet. Your choice. And a possible law suit for your boss in the future. Sound acceptable?"
He had to think carefully about that one. I interrupt his philosophical ruminations and say:
"The traffic is piling up behind us. This could have been over with decades ago, mate! Your choice... hell from me to you and your boss after my car is towed, or just let me detach my dangling mirror and let me go about my business?"
"Ahhhh, bugger it... hurry up... get out of the spot..."
And with that, he drove off into the sunset...
I rip the mirror off, not caring if the wiring was damaged. I jump into the car and race off to Box Hill. Mick Hone Motorcycles... another Suzuki dealer.
I get there in good time, considering peak hour had well and truly started.
I relay my increasingly frustrating and sad story to Ben at Mick Hone. He was appalled. "There are no problems with the supply of Suzuki parts at the moment! What's that guy talking about?"
"No idea." I respond. "I guess he's just a lazy arsehole that can't be frigged fixing a girl's bike. So, can YOU help me perhaps?"
"Of course we can. Bring us the bike and we'll do a quote as quickly as possible for your insurer. We'll fix it and blacken it for you."
Now, the final pain.... $170 to have my bike towed from Ferntree Gully to Box Hill! Not covered by my insurance. I'm seriously thinking about making a formal complaint to VisionMotorsport for all the bullshit and extra expense. What's stopping me is lack of time...
My time is sacrosanct these days.
When I'm not working 5 days a week, I'm seeing doctors, physio, etc. And when I'm not attending to my health and disabilities, I'm packing my stuff AND my mother's stuff... two moves have to be completed in the first week of June. And when I'm not doing that, I'm contacting everyone I can think of to inform them of a change of address... which is not so straightforward. When Olinda settles, I'll be homeless. I have signed up for a post office box, as I plan to house-sit for a while until I figure out where I'm going. Companies don't like post office box addresses! I have to discuss these changes in person most of the time - it's not sufficient to merely fill out a form online or on paper. PO Box addresses are simply not recognised by important institutions like banks and such. So... more fun for me, more crap to sort through.
Despite the depressed overtones to this post thus far, I am feeling happier each day. Every possession I shed, I feel more liberated. Every detail I resolve, I feel so much closer to my goal... I'm definitely on my way to being free.
In my mind, free means no mortgage... no accoutrements tying me down... no idea where I'm going and where I'll end up. It's scary and exciting at the same time. I can't wait to find out what happens to me by the close of 2010.
For those of you reading this... (wow, you made it this far?)
I ask you to send me positive thoughts.
Let my bike be fixed soon, my health improve, my self-esteem increase (there have been too many bashings to that of late), my horizons broaden...
I don't ask for much, do I?
Till my next post... à bientôt, mes amis...
A post script...
You're probably wondering what I did about my car...
I went to the Knox police station during my lunch break on Monday and told my favourite copper the entire story. He did a licence plate check, and spoke with the driver. An Italian guy by the name of Giuseppe... LOL
When I was told that, I had visions of Mario (of Nintendo fame), playing with his moustache, jumping forward and exclaiming "It's-ah me... Mario! I-ah hit-ah your car! I-ah pay for-ah the damages, no problem..." - then turning away from me to toss some pizza dough or something silly like that. Hey, I'm not comfortable with stereotypes! I can't help my unruly imagination... sorry if I offended anyone...
Apparently, this Giuseppe guy was just about to call me... LOL
Yeah, right! And how would he do that, exactly, I wondered...
To cut a another long story short, since the assembly is going to cost $240, less than my $550 excess, I have to repair it, pay for it myself, then send Mr Italy the bill. Dya reckon he'll pay up? I have no idea... I wait with bated breath to find out.