Car problems sneak up on you sometimes. Most problems don't just happen one day. They progressively get worse in a way you don't notice.
We recently found out we were going to need the better part of $1,000 worth of work to my wife's Pontiac. Unfortunately, that was several hundred dollars we didn't just have in our back pockets, so we had to develop a plan.
Bad tires. Bad because they're old and because the car was seriously out of alignment. So that was a complicating factor.
After some comparison-shopping, I settled on one of our local auto repair shops for the work. It wasn't going to be cheap, but I was comfortable with who was doing the work and what they were going to do.
On Tuesday afternoon I picked up the car. I painfully wrote the check and then walked around back to get the car.
As I pulled away, I couldn't believe what I heard -- nothing. Of course, there was the sound of the engine, and the faint sound of tires, but not that loud hum we've grown so used to recently.
I can't say I missed the sound.
As I drove across town, I didn't even turn on the radio. I was enjoying the sound of silence even more.
Hello darkness, my old friend...