27 April 2010

The Money Pit (our version)

DO YOU REMEMBER the scene from 'The Money Pit' where Tom Hanks' character has just about everything imaginable go wrong with his 'fixer-upper' house -- then, as he is preparing for a bath, the entire tub falls through the floor and crashes into 10,000 pieces on the level below? Do you remember the laugh that comes next? Well, Kerri and I sort of feel like laughing like that right now. Before I explain why, take a look at the clip I just referenced:

For us the situation isn't the house, but our vehicles. When we moved to France we purchased relatively inexpensive cars with the hope that they would survive for the few years we planned to be here. Last spring our Renault Scenic had a major problem (distributor belt) that ended up costing us a couple thousand Euros. This spring -- last Friday to be exact -- the gearbox (boite de vitesse) blew out. The initial quote we got today is several (as opposed to 'a couple') thousand Euros. While we try to figure out what do with that car we're counting on our other car to 'hold the fort' for a few weeks. The other car is a bit smaller and is the one I normally drive. To be fair, it's been quite reliable in the two years we've had it, but it needs a few upgrades in areas like brake pads, exhaust, and some other tweaks here and there.

But as of this evening it needs a slightly more major tweak -- like a new back door. A slight accident backing out of our longish driveway had resulted in a bent door that no longer closes appropriately. [Note: To be fair I won't say who was driving, but I'll give you a clue: it wasn't me!] The car is now sitting in our driveway with the door partially closed and a couple of trash bags taped along the edges to keep out any rain. It really is quite a sight.

Cue the laughter!

Anyone have a spare left rear door for a 1992 VW Golf GTI? Black? Just shoot me an email if you do!


Monique said...

My dad had a rental Renault from his company when he was working in Annecy. I guess he suffered a flat tire and it ended up costing over THREE THOUSAND EUROS to fix it.

So crazy how different car maintenance is over there vs. here in the U.S....

Good luck!

La Vie est Belle said...

We know a great carrosserie in Vallauris - they actually found us a door to the BMW we destroyed a few years ago!

hezro said...

I stumbled onto your blog from Kirsten Nilsen's blog. I love what you guys are doing. I have a soft spot for all things French. I grew up in French-speaking Africa. Then I spent a year at Collonges when I was in college and then a year later I spent a summer in Strasbourg. (Speaking of, I'm pretty sure your dad was the president at CUC when I went there, right?) Anyway, what an amazing experience for your family. A bientot!!