The Manatee is a Hussy

I have come to the inescapable conclusion that my van aka the Manatee is a total hussy. Now, I’m sure most of you simply can’t conceive of a van being a hussy but there honestly isn’t any other explanation.

We love her. We clean her. We take care of her and feed her lots of gas and top off her oil. Yet lately, that just doesn’t seem to be enough. First, we sent her to the mechanic to replace the messed up tension pulley in the engine. Everything seems ok for a little while. The Manatee was running smoothly. Then, the compressor in the air conditioner seizes up and breaks the belt. Ms. Manatee got herself bundle back off to the mechanic. After a two day stay during which the Manatee was cossetted and pampered, she came home with her air conditioning working well enough to freeze you out of the van and, yes, she was still running smoothly…until late yesterday.

Yesterday, the boys and I joined my parents for a day trip to Wet ‘n Wild Emerald Point Water Park. Before we left, I had my dad check the oil in my van…just to be on the safe side. The trip there was uneventful and, once we got there, lots of wet, happy, silly fun was had by all. By the time we packed up and headed home, the boys were nicely browned and more than a little tired. I, on the other hand, was a shade scarily similar to the color of the Cheap Sally Dance Party tote bag I was carrying…

I think the Manatee was a bit put out about having to sit and wait in a dirt and gravel parking lot all day because she pitched a fit on the way home. We were driving along and I saw something in the road a little bit in front of us. It didn’t look that big but just big enough to make me think “What the hell is that?” There was literally no time and space to avoid going over it since it didn’t appear until the car just in front of us passed by it. So, after thinking “What the hell is that?”, I quickly followed it up with “What the hell was that noise?” as something thumped near/under my van. I wasn’t too concerned because it sounded like a smallish rock or stick bouncing off the frame. Shortly after that, Manatee started pitching her little fit. Every time I stepped on the brakes, my oil light and alarm went off. We weren’t that far from home so I pressed on but the frequency of the warning light and alarm going off was getting worse and worse. I honestly figured it was a fluke and Manatee was just bitching because she was still running smoothly. When we got home and were unloading the van, I noticed a greasy film on the back window…still was just chalking it up to road grime. After I got the kids settled down for the night, I headed back out to give Manatee her yearly bling (registration sticker). When I walked around to the back of the van I noticed that greasy film covered the bumper, the entire back door, and the rearview window. This started my spidey senses tingling and I was concerned…especially after I looked under the van and saw a small puddle of oil. I called Vic (he was at work) and we came to the as yet unproven conclusion that something punctured the oil pan. So, Ms. Manatee is temporarily out of commission.

I started looking at the facts and the sequence of events and repairs and came to the inescapable conclusion that Ms. Manatee is a hussy that has the hots for her mechanic. What other explanation could there be?

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