Sunday, January 14

A Minor Bingle

On Friday evening, GOM sustained some damage to our car, as a result of a minor 'bingle', as they call them here.

As he was reversing from a carparking space, another vehicle reversed into the back of our car. The driver leapt out, apologised, took full responsibility, & told GOM to "Get it repaired, I will pay."

No one was hurt, though GOM was understandably shaken, & not best pleased. The other vehicle was a large Ute, which did a large amount of damage to our car, & little, or none, to the Ute.

Gom duly rang the Insurance, and was informed that, though the other driver admitted full responsibility, because both vehicles had been reversing, both would be considered to blame.

We are to get the car repaired, pay the excess, then if they manage to get the money off the other driver, they will reimburse us the excess. I dont know how we go about our 'No Claim Bonus' but as we have had the top allowance for a number of years, I hope we dont lose it.

Ever since we got our first car, very early in our marriage, & didnt have it insured, I have always to make damn sure we have had insurance on our cars.

Somehow, no matter how hard you try, you never seem to win with Insurance companies. There are always loopholes, & hidden subclauses, whereby they won't have to give you your full dues- or what you understood to be your full dues!

Over the years we have had a number of cars, naturally. And naturally enough have sustained a few 'hits' & prangs,- most of them not our fault! GOM once had an accident on the eve of us moving into our very first house we bought. You can imagine how upset I was! And it meant the MIL got to 'help' us gosh what a terrible ordeal!

We, foolishly, had not fully insured our car. The ordeal we went through to get it repaired was unbelievable. We were scraping the barrel of course, financially, with it being our first home purchase, so the cost of repairs to the car were not easy to come by. Though it was not GOM's fault, & he had a written statement from the other driver, admitting liability, & agreeing to pay for all damages, on sobering up the next day, the other driver decided he was reluctant to pay.

The repair man would not let our car leave his yard, until payment was recieved. And for that he told us,
"No, the gifting of your first-born will not be enough. Please open your mouth Sir, while I extract two back teeth!
Oh, I see you have several back teeth missing already. Well there is nothing for it, I am afraid, but I will have to take a limb."
And other wounding suggestions, along those lines.

I was not so calm in those days - I seem to remember some phone calls I am less than proud of today! Besides we had a new baby son, & nothing was going to remove him from us!!

We eventually got our car, after tears, threats & pleas. And I made damn sure there was plenty of insurance on it!! Or thought I did!
GOM is inclined to be of the 'manyana' school of thought...there is always tomorrow....

Which was really unlucky, because I was involved in a really bad accident in that same car, where I sustained 5 broken ribs, & the complete writing off of the vehicle. It was before the days of seat belts, I had two small children in the car, & was hit by a huge laden truck, speeding through the lights- the RED lights.

No one is quite sure how I lived through that, or how the children sustained nothing more than a scratch each. I always made them ride in the back seat, & that proved to be good policy, as the whole of the front passenger area of the car was smashed to pulp.

Our next car was purchased for us by our Boss, & it had a very colourful life. It got stolen twice, was pranged into, several times, but always came back & was always damn well-insured. It had belonged to someone we knew, & he always said he had regretted selling it. It was a Holden, & was such a reliable car. I am not a 'car' person. As long as it has a motor & some seats & wheels it is ok by me.

That old Holden's biggest problem was GOM's habit of travelling everywhere on 'E'. It became a traditional joke at the Hotel, that GOM, who was HYPH in those days, only drove on 'E'. Many is the time we sat for hours while he walked or hitched to get petrol for it! I could never understand his lack of foresight. But, looking back it did make for some hilarious tales to share.

After two death defying car accidents in my life, I am a very nervous passenger, & now, also, a reluctant driver. My first bad accident was in a small car as a passenger, & we got hit head on by some young drunks. My face was badly cut, I nearly lost an eye, & it took a long time for my knees to recover. I was only 17, so I guess I was lucky, as there is really very little scarring. Young skin heals amazingly well.

Last accident I was involved with, an old man drove straight into the side of me, & I had DJ with me- she was 8 months pregnant with SG, & she leapt from the car, & ran to the man, screaming in 'colours'! I grabbed her & got her into the car, calming her down. She was my first priority. Luckily noone was hurt- except our car, which was 'new' to us- we had only had it about a week!

As it happened it was an OMEN. That damned car was nothing but trouble & an endless pit for money. Needless to say, we got rid of it, & bought a Toyota, which is so reliable. But now we will be on the merry-go-round of repairs, & who pays. Bummer! I hope we get a loaner car, but suppose we might not. Last 'loaner' we had was a terrible manual thing, that was so stiff in the steering I couldnt drive it! It turned out our GP had a loan of it also, & she & I compared notes on what an awful car it was!

PS. ** I just did this personality test thingy from Mrs Goodneedle.
It wouldnt seem to come out in the little window, like it usually does, so I have just pasted it on here. A bit of a laugh.

You Are An INFP
The Idealist
You are creative with a great imagination, living in your own inner world.Open minded and accepting, you strive for harmony in your important relationships.It takes a long time for people to get to know you. You are hesitant to let people get close.But once you care for someone, you do everything you can to help them grow and develop.
You would make an excellent writer, psychologist, or artist.


joyce said...

You have had some real car adventures! Here in Manitoba we have government no-fault insurance. You can't licence your car without it and they just pay without trying to find out whose fault it is. Saves a ton of time and money. THe only ones not so happy are the lawyers. Most of our car accidents involve hitting deer at night. They wander onto the road and just stand there. Or sometimes I think they throw themselves at the car. Are they suicadal?? Now we buy old luxury cars like Buicks from elderly widows. They are well taken care of and low mileage, just driven to church on Sundays. Lol.

Molly said...

What a tale! I've got a love/hate relationship with cars myself. Neccessary evils you might call them, given the distances in this country...

meggie said...

Sounds like the ideal Joyce. Wish it was like that here!
And yes, like you Molly, I have a love hate relationship with the car... but hate to be without it, now that I can no longer walk to the shops, Dr etc.

Stomper Girl said...

Ah, you made me laugh with your comment about "as long as it has a motor & some seats & wheels it is ok by me." I'm the same although I also insist on 4 doors (a must with kids in the back), air-conditioning, automatic transmission and a stereo!

You've had some very nasty-sounding accidents... I can see why you would be a nervous passenger and a cautious driver.

nutmeg said...

A very varied car driving career Meggie! I can understand your reluctance to drive/be driven based on those stories.

I was hit with my first girl in the back baby seat - only six months old! Spun 180 degrees, up and off a small embankment. But all was OK except my nerves. The one big lesson I learned was to elect to have the replacement car option. Two weeks without a car and a young baby was complete hell. We are with AAMI and they only charge $25 extra per year for this option.