Posted on Sunday 7th January 2007 at 00:00
My faith in humanity is at last restored my friends. It seems that even in this dark and cruel world which we occupy, there is a rare form of goodness, so unusual that one would not expect to find such a thing, even amongst the great and good of society, should they ever be condensed down into a single settlement of all things perfect.

That is right, dear reader, I have found .... an honest car mechanic.

No, don't scorn me and don't close your browser either! I've not drifted into the relms of fantasy and nor have I gone insane and been reduced to talking drivel while attempting to flail against the constraints of a straitjacket. I am in fact not lying but telling the truth, such as it is. Ok, so "mechanic" was perhaps not the best choice of word, as this guy was a little more specialist than that, which makes him all the rarer. He was a tyre man.

Yes indeedy. Born of a breed whose sole purpose in life is to reak misery on the unsuspecting car driver by selling him expensive new tyres to replace his perfectly adequate existing ones, even when he has only come into to enquire about puncture repairs, this individual was clearly the black sheep of his herd.

Ever since I got my car in July, I've noticed that the front wheels are somewhat unbalanced. So much so in fact that that when driving along the motorway I've been known to lose all feeling in my hands because of the vibrations from the steering wheel have shaken them numb. It had long been decided therefore to have the wheels rebalanced as and when the tyres began to get a little lower than at present. In the end, we decided to go to Central Tyre to get them replaced, since, although still well within the tread depth, the unbalance needed fixing, and it was unlikely that they'd do that without insisting on new tyres.

So, yesterday I pop down there, step out of my car and brace myself to be ripped off. A bloke comes over to me and asks what the problem is. I tell him about the vibrations and he examines my tyres. "Oh no" he says, "They aren't anywhere near needing replacing. Would be a real waste to have to change them now. I'll take the car round back and see if I can balance the wheels on the same tyres first. It'll take about 20 minutes."

Pleasently surprised I go and wait in reception, where 10 minutes later he calls to me and asks me if I want to take it for a test drive, which I promptly do. Blow me, even at 80mph the car still handles perfectly, not a vibration to be found anywhere. I hassen back to the garage where I confirm the good news and am presented with a bill of a mere '10! As you can imagine I am over the moon about this, as I'd gone there fully expecting to pay '100 for two new typre that I didn't need.

Not only have the vibrations gone, but even at low speeds the car is an absolute dream to drive, and all for '10 and 10 minutes of my time on a Saturday afternoon. It just remains to be seen if I can be as cheery about my MOT in March ;)

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