Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Bumps in the road...

Last week I had to rush over to EVILBOY's school at lunch to drop off his ice skates.
My brain forgets that Tuesdays are skating days (pretty much every week).
When I got to the school, I tracked down EVILBOY in his lunch room.
...and he looked at me like I had eight heads. "I don't have skating today mom".

I swear the whole lunch room erupted into laughter.
I walked out of the school, embarrassed because I had brought a co-worker for the ride and she would know that I was wrong about skating day.  Plus the kids laughed at me - maybe they really didn't but in my mind it sure felt like they did!

On the way back to the office, my co-worker and I took notice of a truck with names written on the side.  We were joking about the names on the side.  The light turned green so off we both went.  Suddenly I saw those same names we were making fun of getting closer and closer to my door.  I realized that this moron (with the stupid name) was coming into my lane!  I sped up, but unfortunately not fast enough and my poor car got a boo boo.
To me this just looks like a little scrape.  To a mechanic it looks like a really good Christmas it's all denty and stuff *shrug*

When the guy pulled over, he said he didn't think he hit us.  Right away he didn't want to go through insurance (red flag) and you know what, this time of year, I'm willing to work with people. Something about this crisp December air makes me trusting of people.  To be honest, I wasn't even that mad about the whole thing. I got out of the car and very calmly said "dude, you hit my car!" (I don't know where the dude part came from - I was a little shaken up!).

So many people had different opinions.  Some people said to go report it right away, others said to get quotes and present them to him.  All I knew was I had 24 hours to deal with this and that I would have to make a phone call that I didn't want to make. To make matters worse, I had my very important G2 exit test the next morning and I wasn't sure they were going to let my car go through the test with damage that had not been reported.

When I got the quotes, I was actually shocked at how much damage was actually done.  I was hardly bumped and we were looking at between $1,300 - $2,300 to fix my car.  Not to mention I would be without a vehicle for a week - something that is not very easy to do when you have a child who is in extracurricular activities.

I knew this man was not going to want to pay to repair my car and provide me with a rental car, and as much as I hate to out someone, reporting this to insurance was looking like the safe thing to do.  When I called him he was actually being a bit of a jerk.   He was doubting that the damage was that extensive and he wanted me to bring the car to his mechanic in the morning (red flag #2).  I was a bit angry at this point because I had worked so hard to make sure he wouldn't have to put this accident on his insurance.  I took time off work to get quotes and even called my friend who worked at his insurance company to see if his insurance rate would go up because of our little accident (without divulging too much info!).

But I still wasn't ready to report him.  At this point I was afraid of retaliation if I did because I sort of did agree to see his mechanic (even though I was more worried about passing my road test at this point). I decided to go to the accident reporting station to ask a police officer for some advice.  The best thing that happened all day was that the officer took some pictures of the damage and right away made me report it to insurance.  I needed someone to give me that last little push.

Apparently if the damage is over $1,000 you have to legally report it.  I felt like a weight had been lifted off my chest (only to be replaced with the stress of having a driving test the next morning).  Then I remembered that the bad driving man had my phone number because he was supposed to call me the next morning.  The officer assured me that I would never have to speak with him again and that if he called to just ignore his call.

Luckily he didn't call and he didn't challenge that the accident was his fault.  My car is being fixed and I should have her back in a couple days.  For now I have a car with bum warmers (I'm going to be really sad when I lose those bum warmers).

I was also lucky that EVILBOY was not in the car at the time.  The car was hit just behind his door and had he been in the car I'm not so sure he would have been unharmed. It really was not a serious accident by any means, but I know something like this would have affected him, at least emotionally for sure.

My insurance company has been great through this whole thing. When the deer accident happened a few years ago, they were wonderful, but I thought I just happened to be lucky to be matched with a nice adjuster that day.  Turns out they were just as wonderful this time as well, they went above and beyond, taking care of things I thought I would have to take care of, even asking how I am feeling every time they call.

Plus I passed my driving test (without using the accident as a sob story too!). Now it's time to enjoy the holidays!

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