Southwest Road Trip, Car Trouble Fiasco

After our night in Santa Fe, we got up and headed on our way to spend a night in Denver with another of my spouse’s cousins. I took a turn at driving, and although I am not used to driving stick, I did fine on the flat ground. Then we got into a mountain pass, and we wanted to switch drivers, but there was nowhere to pull over because all the pull-off stations were closed due to wildfires. When we finally found one, it was on a pretty steep incline. As I pulled into it, simultaneously trying to downshift and stop, there was a large ‘pop’. This was the sound of the clutch going out. It was probably my fault.

My spouse was able to drive the car far enough to get us into a town (Trinidad, CO, to be specific), and then we pulled over and got towed to a repair shop. While they looked at our car, we went to get some lunch:

At the coffee shop, we noticed an interesting door/art project in the window, and found out that there was this fundraiser going on, where local artists had decorated doors and they were placed in random shop windows throughout the town. People were supposed to go around and find all the doors (there was a list of all doors, but not which shops they were in) and vote on which one was their favorite. Ingenious plan, really – not only did the sale of the artwork benefit a local charity, local businesses also benefitted from people going around looking for the doors being obliged to look in all the shop windows! Anyway, we found all the doors, but given our current circumstances (as well as our admiration for Captain Junior of the F/V Seabrooke and his laid back “It is what it is” attitude), the first door, which was in the coffee shop’s window, still won our vote as favorite. It was entitled, “You know….. it is what it is.” That mantra helped us keep thing sin perspective as we dealt with a super annoying and expensive car repair….

Some random pics of Trinidad (actually a pretty nice little town):

Finally, the auto shop told us that they couldn’t fix it, so we really had no choice but to be towed to the closest Audi dealership, which was in Colorado Springs. 2 hours in the back seat of an un-airconditioned tow truck, and $471 dollars, later, we arrived at the Audi dealership about 10 minutes before they closed. They luckily were open on Saturday, and they said they could work on it then, or we’d have been stuck there until Monday. So we went and got a hotel, went in the hot tub, had dinner, and called it a night. Needless to say, we didn’t make it to Denver to see the cousins.

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