Tales From the Road
First let me acknowledge the 20th anniversary of the tragedy that shook our country. I pray all of us remember the victims and do everything we can to keep our country united and strong.
This week I embarked on a long road trip for my new job. It started with me flying into Sacramento Tuesday morning to pick up the company car. I had a meeting with the Agriculture department at UC Davis. I will be working with them to develop a Workforce Development program that will help attract new employees into the industry. The meeting went extremely well, and I am very excited with the potential of this program.
From there my trip would start with me visiting dealers in Nevada, Utah, Wyoming, and Colorado. From there I will be taking the car to Phoenix and catch a flight back to Idaho Falls on Friday. The first dealer I met in Reno was not very friendly when I called him earlier to ask if I could stop, and even grumpier when I stopped. “Not a good way to start” I thought.
After that, the rest of the dealers I met with were very nice. The last dealer I had to meet with was in Lund, Nevada. I knew I wouldn’t make it, so I called and booked a room at the only hotel in town. It was a long, lonely drive. I finally got to the hotel around 11:00pm. When I got up the next morning, I looked out and noticed a big sign with a silhouette of two team ropers and a team roping arena about 500 yards from the hotel. “I am right at home here!” I thought. I had a good meeting with the dealer and from there I was headed to a dealer in Aurora Utah which is in Southern Central Utah.
As I was driving through the Utah desert I noticed the AC wasn’t working very well. After a few more miles, a warning light came on letting me know there was a problem with the charging system. I found a place where I could pull off the road. I was pretty sure the alternator must have gone bad and caused the battery to run down. I looked in the manual and all it said was if the light comes on, take the vehicle to an authorized dealer for service. At that point, the car died. I tried to call someone, but of course there was no cell service. I had remembered from the navigation that the closest town was Delta that was about 60 miles away. I wasn’t quite sure what to do, so I got out of the vehicle to wait for someone to drive by. It had been about twenty minutes before someone drove by without even slowing down. My heart kind of sunk at that point. All of a sudden, I noticed he slowed down and turned around to come back and see if he could help.
There is a lot more to this story how we tried to charge it up so I could drive it, but we ended up having him take me into Delta. I asked him what I owed him, and he wouldn’t take any money. Then he said, “If you want to do something for me, let me give you a number to put in your phone.” I assumed it was going to be his number until he said, “That’s for the Mormon Missionaries, and maybe you could just give them a call.” I told him I was LDS and we both laughed. “I will definitely do something for the missionaries in Idaho Falls when I get back,” I told him. He was a really great guy, and I am so grateful he stopped and helped me. I found out where the vehicle broke down was 30 miles from any cell service.
I got in touch with Droughbay Chevy. They are the only place in town that has a tow truck. The gentleman was very nice and told me he could go out after 6:00pm to pick up the car. When we got to the vehicle, he looked around and said the problem was the belt must have broken. We hauled it back into Delta and he said they would try to fix it, but he didn’t know if they could work it into the schedule. He also said it would depend on the auto parts store having a replacement belt. He said to give him a call later in the morning.
I didn’t want to call too early, but I also knew I was going to have to decide what to do if I wasn’t going to be able to do anything until Monday. I called around 10:00 and he said he just finished putting the belt on and was getting everything put back together. He said he would have someone come and pick me up. I told him how much I appreciated that and how grateful I was for everything they did to help me through this entire situation.
This ordeal has been a great reminder to me how important your attitude is in any situation that you face. I could be angry about the car breaking down where it did, or I could think how much worse it could have been on the long drive the night before. I could focus how much of an inconvenience this was for me, or I can focus on the wonderful people that reached out to help me. I am quite sure there were some special angels looking out for me as well. I am a very blessed man. Thanks for reading.
Next week: The Road Trip Conclusion
P.S. I told Kristi about the guy wanting to have me call the missionaries. “It’s probably because of the swear words I used before he got there!” I told her.