Chantelle and I were quite looking forward to spending a night at the 12 Apostles hotel in Cape Town as a gift to ourselves for our wedding anniversary/birthday celebrations, but of course, that damn thing known as adult responsibilities kind of stepped in the way of that.
During the week, a quick trip to Pick ‘n Pay turned into a fun spectacle for Chantelle when after parking, she found that she was unable to unlock the driver’s door on our Hyundai Accent. This of course meant that for the rest of the day, the only option for exiting and entering the car would of course be coming in through the passenger door, gingerly levering one’s self over the gear knob, and then sliding into the driver’s seat.
And considering that we’re not exactly the lightest people around, this in itself is quite a spectacle for amused onlookers.
Naturally, because this also meant that we couldn’t set the alarm on the car, this needed to get fixed ASAP, so a quick trip to Hyundai Helderberg had them diagnosing the problem and placing an order for a new car door lock actuator for our 2007 Accent. (Yes, I could save money, buy the part and do it myself, but hey, I’m not THAT into DIY thank you very much).
Anyway, one day and R2,304 later, we can now enter and exit the Accent like normal adults.
A small price to pay to in order to save the gear knob any further potentially traumatic experiences…
My Hyundai Getz came back from it’s 90,000 km service a couple of weeks ago (great, it’s still on a service plan), and as timing would have it, Chantelle’s Hyundai Getz went in yesterday for its 165,000 km service (not so great because this one is straight out of our pocket, R1,600 this time around).
Not that our car services is the reason for this silly little post mind you. Instead, I had to chuckle at an unexpected stroke of good timing, though I’m not sure whether I should laugh or be sad to be quite honest.
You see, as we hopped into my car late afternoon to go and pick up Chantelle’s car following the phone call from Helderberg Hyundai Service Center had come in, I turned on the ignition, flicked on the headlights (it was raining), and immediately cursed in despair when brightly reflecting back at me off our sliding door was only one headlamp.
But like I said, impeccable timing.
Here I was, already on my way to the Service Center, meaning that in one fell swoop we could pay for Chantelle’s service and I could purchase a new lamp*.
(Which I then installed myself. After all, I did go through this with the opposite front headlamp some time last year!)
So, enlightened timing indeed! ;)
*Pleasingly, this only weighed in a R45 for the bulb.
UPDATE: This bulb lasted something ridiculous like only three or four weeks. Damn it. Anyway, the latest replacement bulb seems to be doing a slightly better job at staying alive!
My nifty little midnight grey Hyundai Getz is now around a year and a half old by my reckoning, with 40,000 km on the clock (ouch, I know). However, here is the kicker. It seems to have developed this sporadic habit of breaking the driver’s side central locking system.
Every now and then, out of the blue, the “unlock all doors” functionality works as expected when exiting via the driver’s front door, but the “lock all doors” fails, which is quite inconvenient when you realise that you now have to walk around the car and lock each and every individual door by hand (because remember, the central locking was kind enough to still unlock all the other doors!)
Funnily enough, Chantelle has a similar but reversed problem with the central locking on her older 2006 model Getz, where basically the other doors don’t want to unlock. Which by the way is a far more convenient problem to sit with than mine when you think about it!
So the question is, has anyone else experienced the same problems with the central locking on their Hyundai Getz?
Two things getting serviced today actually, the first being Gina G. Getz who goes into the Hyundai Helderberg Service Centre for her big 30,000 km service (a couple of days before her 1st birthday actually) and the second being little Jessica who is going in for one or other big injection which costs around R8,000 a shot and which gets repeated for the next four months or so (i.e. it costs a truckload to get this one done!).
In terms of Gina G., it is a simple matter of parking her in the parking lot, handing over your keys and double checking that everything is still under warranty and a service plan, which it should be considering that the car isn’t even a year old yet.
Seriously, the kilometres are piling on rather too quickly for my liking – the 15,000 km service was done a mere 5 or so months ago!
The second service, Jessica’s injection, is obviously a far more complicated affair.
One needs to first wake, prepare and get her to the hospital, then hold back the tears as they painfully inject her and then deal with the aftermath as we have been told that this one will hurt – a lot. Needless to say, my sympathies to C who is handling this one! :)
And it cropped up as a bit of a mystery actually. We received a phone call out of the blue telling us that Jessica has been authorised for it, but we didn’t know what, who or why, never mind what the actual injection contents is or does!
Turns out it was a mistake on the part of Dr. Edson as he forgot to inform us about it, but thankfully the hospital didn’t and with Discovery Health’s blessing, everything is sorted out now, so much relief in other words and an even better protected baby as the end result.
Anyway, now to the actual reason behind this slightly inane post. While you can’t really call Gina G. Getz cute, there shouldn’t be any problem applying the cute tag to a rather fluffy eared Jessica:
So my beloved little 1.4 Gina G. Getz has managed to clock up to her 15,000 kilometre mark already, after owning her for just over six months now, meaning she is travelling in excess of 2,000 kilometres per month!
This does of course mean that my extended warranty taken out on my brand spanking new car might not exactly last for all that long at the rate at which I’m going, but hey, I need to get to work, so what can one do?
Anyway, the 15,000 kilometre achievement (I half expect to hear the XBOX happy noise to play in my head when the odometer hits the precise achievement value) brings with it Gina G. Getz’s first official check-up (or service if you will), meaning that come next Monday 11/10/2010, my girl will be sitting in the hands of some unknown greasy mechanic as he fondles her and attempts to get off her bits one by one.
But it must be done and thanks to all the paperwork and all that extra money I’m paying a month, this little trip shouldn’t cost me a cent – but that still doesn’t mean I like the prospect of hearing about any potential things that might have gone wrong with her already!
At least I scored a free lift back to Gordon’s Bay in the morning though, so the guys over at Hyundai Helderberg can’t be all that bad I suppose! :P
So my beloved new girl Gina G. has already hit the 1100 kilometers travelled marked and so far she really is proving to be a wonderfully smooth, comfortable drive. I’m very happy with her on the road at this point, though there is just one thing about her that grates me a little: she’s one hell of a thirsty girl it would seem.
For some or other reason I simply assumed before I bought her that any car I purchase new today would automatically be more fuel efficient than Jetta Jameson, my old 1997 1.6 Volkswagen Jetta who is currently sitting unloved in the complex’s parking lot. She had about a forty litre engine capacity and off a tank I could get about 520 km before I felt the need to fill up.
Obviously I expected Gina G. to give me a little bit more loving, but I’m ashamed to say she only manages to give me about 500 km on the same size tank meaning that at this stage of the game, I’m slightly worse off in terms of fuel consumption at the moment – and with brent crude currently sitting at $87 per barrel on the world markets (making a near future petrol price hike much more than just a slim chance), not exactly the position I would have liked to be in.
Sure a lot of people are saying, “Oh c’mon, you just have to wait for her to settle in” or “Don’t worry, she’ll improve after her first service”, but man, there’s a sticker on the front window which I didn’t notice until my pops pointed it out after seeing it for the first time. And that sticker doesn’t bring good news.
And unfortunately as we all know, those stickers seldomly lie.
Oh well. Thankfully she makes up for her thirsty habits in a lot of other ways – like always looking sexy no matter what lighting conditions she encounters! :P
The on the other woman in my life front we get Chantelle, who naturally managed to snag my cold that I’ve been sitting with and progressed through each phase just like I previously had done. Shame, the poor girl has been as sick as a dog and done her best to stay away from work, but we all know our Chantelle – a workaholic right to the end!
(I’ve tried to nurse her as much as possible, even bought her pizza the other evening – which turned out to be a bit pointless for someone who can’t taste their food at the moment!)
One funny story I do have to share, coming out of this whole ordeal, happened the other morning when I woke up after a long and restful sleep (surprising because I was still recovering and was suffering from sore joints, a closed chest and a nasty cough), only to find the bed next to me completely devoid of all signs of my wife.
Now I would have thought she had maybe just gotten up to go to the bathroom, had it not been for the fact that Olympus was lying next to me in the middle of the bed – and he is generally not that an opportunistic fellow.
But I chose to ignore, and went back to bed for a bit, before finally getting up for real and stumbling through to the kitchen… where I walked in on a Chantelle blissfully asleep on the lounge couch under her red comforter, earplugs and all.
Well apparently I was so restless and noisy during the night thanks to my extra loud snoring due to the closed passageways, that at 01:00 she thought “Fuck it, enough is enough”, and got out of bed, grabbed her comforter and sought out a couch on which to try and get some shut-eye!
So shame, I guess it really is easier just to go sleep on the couch than try and rouse me when I’m in dreamland! :)
And now simply because I can, an awesomely cute view of Achillle who has now seemingly abandoned our house again now that Tessa is back from her Indian pilgrimage as well as a mention that Chantelle and I are currently engaged in a “Recording each other snoring” war – so far her evidence outshines mine it must be said! :D
(Oh, and in case you are wondering work is busy as all hell at the moment. Major problems to deal with on the coding front as well as yet another looming office move plus the addition to the team of our very first project manager – scary stuff! :P)
Jetta Jameson. My beloved chariot is getting a little long in the tooth now. 12 years old, lots of kilometers on the clock, the simple fact of the matter is that she can no longer keep up with my demands (well, she’s not that perky any more). The 100 km there and back daily commute is proving to be too much for her to handle and as such over the last while I’ve found myself taking her in for repair work on a far more regular basis that what I should be doing.
The last incident was the straw that broke the camel’s back to be honest.
I had just spent a couple of thousand having her clutch replaced and her serviced when literally a week later she started leaking water, forcing me to continuously pull over to the side of the road in order to top the thirsty broad up. I took her into my mechanic and his initial thoughts that it can’t be something particularly good. Luckily for me though, his thoughts proved unfounded and the guilty culprits, cracked water flanges, were brought to justice and replaced, but not before putting me out of pocked once again.
At this point one realises that the scale which balances out running an old car against paying off a new car appears to have finally slipped in the new car direction, forcing me to make a snap judgement and decide that enough was enough, in order to get some reliability back in my life, I’d need to swallow the bitter pill of introducing my first ever taste of debt into my life and buy a new car.
So I did.
And it was a particularly painless process. I spent a morning browsing all major manufacturer’s websites, comparing models and prices. I knew I was in the market for a hatchback and something in the 1.4 or 1.6 market. After a quick burst of information gathering and eliminating some potentials thanks to discussions I had with various people (like my mechanic), I narrowed down the possibles to two options. Either a new Volkswagen Polo Vivo or a Hyundai Getz. However, the Vivo lagged behind as a choice right from the get go. Although the base price of a Polo is sitting very low at R107,000, it comes with virtually nothing. Everything else you need to bolt on, and that quickly shoots up the price into the same region as the Getz. The Getz on the other hand was sitting pretty right from the start. Remember, Chantelle has an older 2004 model and I absolutely love her car. I know it, I know how it feels and I know how it drives. So that’s a plus. But of course, the final nail in the Polo’s coffin was the timing of my decision. Television and radio adverts were currently flitting about announcing a R10 000 saving on buying a Getz in the month of March, putting it price at a fairly reasonable R117,000 for the standard 1.4 A/C model.
So in the space of a single morning, I had picked out the make I wanted to buy, picked out the model and derivative, and even contacted the local Hyundai Helderberg (Somerset West) branch to get some more information on the special and specs of the car. They almost instantly phoned back following my enquiry, and I spoke to a nice and friendly woman by the name of Tammy over the phone. She game me the info I asked for and I then suggested that I’ll most likely pop in on Saturday to see her.
Which is exactly what Chantelle and I did the Saturday before last. We met this marvellously friendly and easy going woman by the name of Tammy Geldenhuys who showed us around the car, tantalized Chantelle with talk about the I20, and answered all my loaded questions with ease and honesty, something that I really took to. So there and then I made the offer to purchase, citing that I wanted a matte black 1.4 Getz – and this was without seeing one sitting around or without even taking one out for a test drive. I just knew I wanted it.
The next step was my introduction to Jannie Swart, the financial guy at Hyundai Helderberg. We chatted and I made an official application for finance, choosing to lay down a fairly big deposit out of my own pocket and finance the rest. We chatted, Chantelle left us to have her hair done, and I eventually stepped out with two business cards and instructions on various documents I would need to fax through to Jannie as soon as possible.
Which was obviously Monday at the office. Though as Murphy’s Law would have it, the entire Westlake Business Park was sitting without their Telkom phone lines for the whole morning, meaning that my urgent need to fax had to sit down and take a backseat while I waited upon Telkom to sort out their mess. So much later than promised, I did eventually fax through my documents, though the delay had a knock-on affect meaning that my application to finance took a little longer to get approved, as did the window for getting my car registered by Hyundai. The other bad news coming out of Monday was of course that in the end they couldn’t source a matte black Getz that I so badly wanted anywhere in the country, so I had to settle for my second choice colour, namely the metallic midnight grey version – and man am I glad I did!
What a beautiful colour car. Changing appearance as the light changes, this metallic colour is perfect as far as I’m concerned. And in hindsight, I now have no idea why I wanted the black so badly in the first place. Far, far more practical and beautiful is now what I sit with! :)
Anyway, back to the story. So the delays kept on coming and I kept on phoning to find out what the progress is (my only niggle was this point. They really could have made more of an effort in keeping me in the loop!), until eventually Tammy said everything is sorted, I can come pick up the car on Wednesday afternoon.
Needless to say, a very, very excited Craig departed from work quite early on in the afternoon, picked up Chantelle and the camera and then happily darted through to the dealership, with a grin broader than any Chesire cat’s.
And there she stood. Beautiful. Tammy hastily affixed the giant red ribbon as we stepped inside and after a quick sit down and explanation of things to come with her, I then moved to the boring bit which involves signing paper after paper after paper with Jannie. But it was all worth it. With her shiny new number plates attached and a quick rundown of the interior, she was mine! Letting Chantelle have the honour of taking her off the showroom floor and giving her the first drive, I proudly stood aside, camera in hand. and watched her slowly edge out of the showroom and into the big bad world.
It was awesome.
Anyway, now she’s home and I’m pleased to report, an absolute pleasure to drive. Her low power in relation to a 1.6 means that she’s remarkably smooth to drive and doesn’t feel quite as jumpy as Chantelle’s sometimes does, meaning that I really just eased into driving her with no adaptation at all. She turns well, feels light, has a pretty interior (with radio controls on the steering wheel) and can go as fast as I need her to go, and this pretty much sums up how I feel about her.
I absolutely love driving her and think that the decision in the end was the right one.
(Just a pity it’s going to take me six years to pay her off!)
So world, say hello to the gorgeous Gina G., the new lady in my life! ;)