I just got my car fixed.
I should know by now to hide my receipts and just TELL Gilberto the total. In abbreviated form. Like, in this situation, maybe leaving off the labor costs? Then I wouldn't really be lying when he asked how much the service was. AND I'd be saving him from a heart attack.
When he looked at the receipt, he turned red and started gagging things out about Mexico and parts and free time in a higher pitched voice than I've ever heard before. I think what he was trying to say is that he could've taken it to Mexico and only paid for parts, or done it all himself in his free time. But I'm still not sure because his gagging quickly turned to fury and he started going on about how I could have possibly thought it was okay for them to charge me that much, and (here’s where the Brazilian comes out) why didn’t I at least try to bargain!
I'd never had my car serviced before, except during oil changes when the guy would say, “The computer indicates you’re due for such and such,” and I'd get something flushed or a filter replaced. When my car started to act a bit strange coming up on 93,000 miles, I figured it'd be a good thing to take it in for the 90k check at a garage highly recommended by friends. And, may I add, Gilberto thought that was a good idea, too, since he didn't really want to spend a bunch of time on my car after working all day long.
So when the auto place called with the final price to get my car back in tip top shape (including new rotors and brakes), it didn’t sting so bad when I thought about how little I’d invested into it over the last six years. And it seemed pretty darn good in regards to being able to keep it on the road another six.
But, it WAS about the price of a whole paycheck. Again, abbreviated receipts are really the way to go.
What it all comes down to is that Gilberto will be handling all car repairs from now on, which is fine with me. I did what I thought was right when left to my own devices. Gilberto has seen the error of his ways by leaving me to handle it on my own. We’re now at a point where we can joke about it, but I think he can only handle a price shock like that happening once in our marriage.
I just hope that when the next repair comes along that he can’t handle himself, and he takes it down to Mexico so the brother-in-law of a co-worker's cousin can work on it for super cheap, he comes back with the car. Luckily my hubcaps aren’t removable.