Automotive Panic

More rain today. It didn’t really matter ‘cos we were off to Valencia airport after a few chores to collect Geoff and Pam on their return trip from Australia via England. Their flight was due at 3:15 PM so, allowing time for a fuel stop on the 1hr 15 minute drive, we thought we’d leave at 1:45 PM.

Being the tidy people that we sometimes are, we thought we’d clear out the bins and call in at the basura (rubbish containers) on our way off the development. Carol declared that the rubbish was too heavy for her to lift into the basura but she would do the recycling stuff – largely empty wine bottles 🙂 – while I took care of the heavy rubbish. “Fine”, I said.

I drew up near the basuras, parking rakishly across the track. (I must have seen too many episodes of Kojak as a child.) Leaving the car running, Carol and I leapt out, she to do the recycling, me to deposit the rubbish. I returned to the car first and slammed the tailgate shut on the now empty boot. We had both shut our respective doors. I returned to the driver’s door ready to shoot off to the airport via the BP station in Benissa only to discover that the blasted car had chosen this particular cold and rainy day to suffer one of its occasional glitches. It had chosen this time-critical trip to the airport to bloody well lock itself! The doors were firmly locked, we were both outside, the keys were in the ignition, the engine was running and the car was blocking the track. Brilliant! Arghhhh! Why now?

Mercifully we were not far from home – about a quarter of a mile. I thought I remembered seeing a spare car key in a kitchen cupboard, along with a lot of other rarely-needed keys. Risking a second heart attack, the first having occurred with my realization that we were locked out of a running car blocking the track, I jogged as best I could uphill back to the house. The dogs were a little confused about my being back so soon but they remained calm and let me in to search for the key. I found it eventually and was soon puffing and wheezing, jogging back downhill to the still running, still locked car across the still blocked track.

The key worked and we were soon off to Benissa to fill up with petrol. The obliging pump attendant filled the tank, I paid my €38 and we were off to the autopista heading for Valencia airport. The fuel light was on and the fuel gauge read “empty”! Curious. Let’s hope that nothing else breaks down.

We were a little later than I would have liked but we got to Valencia airport without further mishap, parked, and Geoff and Pam, their flight on time, appeared through the arrivals hall about five minutes later. Our parking bill was a mere 15¢.

I had spent the morning making a Coq au Vin for the weary travellers’ evening meal. After a somewhat traumatic day fighting one of Henry Ford’s modern contraptions, it went down very well with a vino or four. 🙂

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Posted in Spain, 2008
2 comments on “Automotive Panic
  1. If the tracks you refer to are railroad tracks then this ended the best it could have!

  2. JC says:

    No, not railroad tracks but dirt tracks used by cars. There is a coastal railroad joining Denia, Benidorm and Alicante that looks fun, though – not that I’d want to park across it.

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