Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Broken driver side mirror

So the street I live on is bound and determined to make my vehicle-owning life a living hell. First, my CRV was rear ended and then my Grand Caravan driver-side mirror was sideswiped. I don't see other cars on the block or along the street having this problem but it happened to me within a few months time for both my vehicles.

I have a two-car drive way but sometimes my wife's family stops by while I'm at work. I come home and one of my vehicles and an in-laws' vehicle is in my driveway so I have to park my second vehicle at curb of the street. The in-laws leave and I end up leaving my vehicle parked at the curb for whatever reason like laziness or I'm already in bed. Then some idiot comes by and hits my vehicle(s) and doesn't own up to it because they're probably some stupid drunk assholes!

I looked all over the world wide web and local auto parts shops like O'Reilly's or Pep Boys for a cheaply priced replacement mirror. I didn't want to buy from a dealership because of dealership pricing. I almost had to because my particular model seems to be rare for some damn reason. It seems my mirror is in-between the two models that are widely offered from various vendors and dealerships. Either, I can find a replacement manual mirror or mirror with remote and heat. My mirror is remote with no heat. I have no problem having a manual mirror as I hardly adjust my van mirrors but I didn't want to order online and then the damn thing not fit/work like I thought. Then I'd have to go through the process of returning and probably getting screwed out of some of my money that I thought I was saving. Since I couldn't find my particular model on the Internet or in retail auto parts stores and surely didn't want to go to a dealership, I had an epiphany and thought of looking at a junkyard.

Hell, I haven't been to a junkyard in something like twenty five years! I didn't even know if they still existed...for pulling parts, anyway. I figured there were ones around where they just crushed, stacked and stored cars for scrap metal but what the hell do I know these days. I don't work on my own vehicle much at all these days since I'm busy and they have all these new technologies and shit that only "smart mechanics" know how to fix. Anyway, I googled 'junkyard' and found a few in my general vicinity. The closest was about fifteen minutes away. It closed at 6 p.m. and I get off of work at 5 p.m. but with rush-hour traffic happening at that time AND going the direction I'd need to go, I'd have to either leave work early or wait for the weekend. The weekend timing won.

I made my first trip towards the junkyard and got about three quarters of the way before I realized that I did not bring ANY tools for removing the mirror if I found a replacement. I went ahead and drove the rest of the way to know for sure the location and to be sure it actually existed. I mean it did have a website and all but I just wanted to be doubly sure.

It took me a couple of more weeks before I was able to head to the junkyard again. This time I was prepared. I brought the old mirror as well as my tool box of which I really only needed a couple of tools.

I walked all over this junkyard. It was much bigger than I imagined. The area where most of the vehicles that would contain my mirror was the farthest distance in the farthest corner of the junkyard from the entrance. It was a hot, dry day with a slight breeze and this place was very dusty. After about fifteen minutes, my eyes were watering from the dirt, my nose was running from the dust and I think I was getting a farmer's tan from the sunshine.

So long story completed, I finally got my driver-side mirror replaced.

compared to

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