Well wasn’t that an adventure young Bill? Well, sort of. Possibly. Maybe and probably not. Today we were heading down one of the lesser trafficked routes from Abilene to San Antonio, Mrs S at the wheel, when a horribly familiar blap-blap-blap sound suddenly assailed our ears. “Pull over, Hon.” I said.
“Er Bill, I think we’ve got a flat.” Mrs S replied.
“I think you’re right. Pull in over there.” I gestured at the first possible widening of the highway and we ground to an uneven halt. Swinging out before we’d actually come to a full stop, I waltzed around the back of the car to be greeted by the following sight; It was pretty plain we were not going to fix this one with our instant puncture repair kit. The outside of our rear left tyre was as you can see, pretty much shredded.
Out came all our luggage from the boot (Oh all right, the trunk) and I pulled out the skinny spare while Mrs S watched my back. Wind up the jack, keeping an weather eye out for anything that might convert Ma Sticker’s youngest into roadkill, I swapped the thoroughly trashed rear tyre for the spare. “You drive.” Mrs S said. I gave her a terse nod. As family guard dog my job is the tricky stuff, and we were a hundred miles from the nearest known dealer. Also, Mrs S was feeling a little nervous about driving on the skinny and perhaps a bit upset from having a tyre trashed beneath her. It’s the sort of thing that can put a crimp in anyone’s day.
Fortunately we were only a mile from a small settlement, and after asking for directions at one of the local spares stores (They even understood my accent) we arrived at a small tyre dealership. After about ten minutes checking, the owner showed us the quarter inch hole that had started the trouble and told us that he had no tyres of the type we required. He could probably get one by tomorrow perchance? We declined as we wanted to make San Antonio for this evening and were directed to a Tyre retailer forty miles down the road. Driving fifteen miles an hour under the limit, pulling on to the hard shoulder whenever faster traffic came barrelling up my tailpipes, we made it to the specified retailer, whose advertising proclaimed that he stocked tyres of the make we required. A few phone calls later, he regretfully announced that there were no tyres of the type we needed within forty miles. So off we went again, driving like Miss Daisy, and after being buffeted by the backwash of what felt like a couple of hundred big rigs passing at speed, we tracked down a main dealership for our little Subaru just short of San Antonio. The rest was a bite into our credit limit and a little time to drink coffee and reflect that it could have been a whole lot worse.
Now tucked up all safe and sound in our San Antonio hotel, we’re stopping for a full day tomorrow to let Mrs S hit the shops and me to wander around the museums. As an aside; we’ve been in the so-called gun happy USA for almost two weeks, and the only firearms we’ve come across have been in historical brochures and shown on television. Must be all those concealed carry permits, I thought, they’re so good you can’t see the guns.