Thursday, July 31, 2008

More Flats

Well, my flat tire woes aren't over yet. Not only did Faith get a flat in the Buick last week, but I got three flats in two days this week.

It all started when I was trying to decide whether to take Argyle Canyon or Gate Canyon back to Vernal from Harmon Canyon. When I thought about taking Argyle Canyon, I got a sick feeling so I decided to take Gate Canyon. It's a good thing I listened to that sick feeling the Spirit was giving me because I got a flat in Gate Canyon. Gate Canyon has a wider and busier road than Argyle Canyon. Not only did I have room to pull over, but I was able to flag down someone to lend a hand when I had trouble. Once I got the lug nuts off, which was a feat in itself because I had to stand on the lug wrench and bounce to loosen the lug nuts (remember I'm not a featherweight so they were really torqued on), the wheel wouldn't budge. I kicked it and banged on the tire with my rock hammer and nothing happened. Anyway, I flagged down an oil field service guy in a pickup and he had a huge rubber mallet. He wailed on the wheel with that thing for about a minute before it started to budge. If I had taken Argyle Canyon, I most likely would have been out of luck in the roadside assistance department. So he helped me finish changing the tire and I was on my way.

Ever since my flat experiences in Wyoming, I've kept two spare tires in my truck just in case so the next day, I decided that I would be safe with just one spare because I didn't have time to get the first flat fixed before I had to return to the field. Turns out the hole in that one was too big to be fixed anyway. So I head out to do some surveys with a co-worker and when we get back into the truck at around 2pm, I notice that my spare (the one I put on the day before) was totally flat. The sidewall had cracked and let all the air out so I knew that one was a goner too. No problem, I still had one more spare left. So I got that sucker on in record time and we were off. We had one more well pad to survey and then we headed back to Vernal. Again, we had to make a choice. We could have taken Seep Ridge or Glen Bench. We decided to take Seep Ridge because we were closer to pavement that way and had no spares. So as we're driving down Seep Ridge (on pavement) we heard a series of three terrible noises. After each one, we get out and check what's going on.

Terrible Noise #1: The tread on one of my tires begins to split and tear off. We resume course and drive a little slower.

Terrible Noise #2: All of the tread on said tire is stripped off and we're driving on baldness. Since we have no spare, we just slow down and keep on truckin'.

Terrible Noise #3: Amazingly enough, the tread isn't the only thing that wants to come off the tire, a large piece of sidewall decides it would like to stay behind. We keep on keepin' on.

I guess I should clarify. Technically this third tire wasn't a strictly flat per sé, but it was destroyed seeing as how there was zero tread remaining. By God's good grace, we arrive safely in Vernal and go directly to Big-O where they proceed to try and rip me off. (The Vernal Big-O isn't as nice or as competent as the Spanish Fork Big-O.) I had three ruined tires and three good ones. I bought one new one to get me home. My tires need to be balanced and rotated and I need to "borrow" a couple more spares from my Dad and my alignment is out of whack, but I made it home without a spare. I've got 5 more old tires to ruin before I'll feel justified in buying a complete new set. At this rate I should be the proud owner of a new set of tires some time next week.

I believe in a thing called love,



Faith said...

Glad you got home safely. Love you!

Mama said...

How entertaining to read of your adventures. I think Big O ought to GIVE you the tires as an experiment to see just how long you can keep them going. But a lifetime guarantee is ok, too. What you need are the solid tires like on the wheelbarrow. Oh, by the way, Papa says you need 3 spares! ha Ha. I wonder how many he has left, but you better get them before they rot, b/c they must be old seeing as they fall apart so fast! You are getting pretty expert at the tire changing business. Hugs.