Finding a car down here? Not so bad. Actually receiving it, making it work, etc. Not so good. Here is a look at how we came to own our cars!
Saturday, November 7th: We land in STT and rent a Jeep to get all of our crap from the airport to Kates.
Sunday, November 8th: We return the Jeep and rent a bright blue Dodge Calibur for a week so we can run errands and look for cars. It is due back on the 15th.
Monday, November 9th: We drive past a house that has two Jeep Cherokees in the front yard for sale so we call the number on the car and are told one is a '99 for $5K and one is a '97 for $4500. We say thanks and ponder.
Wednesday, November 11th : We drive past again, pull over and call. Antonio says he can be there in 5 minutes, we wait 20 with the family that lives in the house- clearly not related to Antonio. He comes, tells us the '97 is alread sold but we can take the '99 out for a test drive. At this point he realizes he only has the keys for the '97 and we decide to meet the next day.
Thursday, November 12th: We drive to meet Antonio at 11 AM, he decides he can't meet us then, ,how about 530 PM? So we have 6.5 hours to kill... We meet him at 530 (correct keys!) and Tim goes to start the car and it won't turn over. Antonio goes away somewhere and returns with the keys for the '97, switches the battery and we drive the car. It drives just fine for an island car and we tell Antonio we will call him tomorrow.
Friday, November 13th: We call Antonio and ask him to meet us at the 'lot'. He pulls up in a green Ford Escort we had seen around the island. It is also for sale. Tim asks him how much he wants for it and he says $2800. Tim offers him $6K for both cars, he thinks for 30 seconds and says okay. There are a few things that need to be done on the cars- Escort needs a new tire and the Jeep needs a mirror. Oh- and let's not forget titles, plates, etc. Antonio says 3 business days- Wednesday- so we follow him to his shop and give him a $500 deposit. Then we extend our rental car through the 18th.
Wednesday, November 18th: First things first- we are trying to figure out how to drive three cars with two people and make it to our jobs when we need to. Guess it doesn't matter because when we call Antonio- he doesn't have the paperwork. Oooookay. So we call and extend the rental car until the 19th.
Thursday, November 19th: Yeah! We get the Jeep (complete with tags, plates and insurance) and I follow Tim to return the rental car. We leave the rental car place only to find that the car is pulling like we have a flat. Really? I've had this car all of an hour. Luckily we are right by a tire place so we pull in. He replaces the stem. Okay, $20 fix. No biggie. Oh yeah- and the Escort isn't ready yet. Maybe tomorrow.
Friday, November 20th: We go back to Antonio who gives us the keys to the Escort. While Tim is writing the check I happen to ask where the title is for each car. He said in the glove compartment. I go back and check the Jeep- yeah... it's in his name, not ours. So, we have to leave the Jeep with him and keep our check with us. At this point, you can tell he's getting frustrated with his guy who did the licensing. Luckily he gives us his Trailblazer so we have two cars and tells us to come back on Monday.
Monday, November 23rd: We call Antonio, not ready.
Tuesday, November 24th: Jeep is not ready still. Tim's car won't start. Buy a new battery and still won't start. Some cords are loose according to a guy Tim works with. They jimmy it as a quick fix.
Wednesday, November 25th: Jeep is ready! We give him the Trailblazer, have him fix the battery cord issue in the Escort, deduct the cost of the battery and are on our way.
Sunday, November 29th: Tim's car has a flat tire at work which he alleviates by filling with air from the golf cart air supply!
Wednesday, December 2nd: Busy car day! We drive to Stumpy Beach, rough road to say the least, and the same thing that happened to my tire (pulling right but not looking flat) happens again. It occurs to us this happens when you switch out of 4WD into 2WD- great. Put Fix a Flat in it and it's fine. Text Kate to get her friend's contact info who works on Jeeps. Take Tim's car to Western Auto for an 'inspection' of sorts to see if anything is wrong and to figure out his tire situation. He has a screw in the wall making it unpluggable. Buy tire. I go to work, security goes to move my car- it no longer reverses! Call Romeo, my new car guy, he comes up to me and magically makes it work. For now he says- transmission fluid was burnt. He will try and flush it in hopes that will fix it and I won't need to rebuild my transmission. We make arrangements for him to come get my car on Friday.
Friday, December 4th: Romeo takes my car and does a transmission flush. He said all is good and I tell him he can have the car again next week to look at the tire/4WD thingee, wondering if this will ever end!
All quiet on the car front.... for now!