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Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Car Fun

I just realized that it's been a month since I posted anything, so I thought I'd do a little sharing.

A couple of Saturdays ago, Horyon packed Maxine in the car to go to her Saturday Bible Study. She recently found one at a Korean church, one which has an interesting connection to us. The pastor's daughter, C.G., was my coworker at Kosin University in Pusan.

But that's beside the point. The point is that Horyon didn't make it there. In fact, she didn't make it out of sight of our home, which was a fortunate thing. When she tried to turn right on Wakarusa Street (isn't that an awesome name for a street?), the van refused to move. The cars behind her were getting impatient, but she couldn't move. She turned on the hazard lights, and they moved around her. She then backed down the hill to the curb opposite our house.

I became aware of this when the doorbell rang. I got up, opened the door, and saw Horyon running back across the yard and towards the van. She stopped long enough to tell me that it wasn't working. I got in and had her take Maxine into the house, then backed the van into our driveway and garage.

Monday morning I had it towed to our mechanic. The verdict: needs a new transmission. $2700 for a factory rebuild with a three-year guarantee. I didn't even ask for the price of a new one, just told him to order it and get started.

A week later I picked it up. Seems okay to me, but Horyon isn't so sure. I'll drive it a bit tomorrow to check.

I went to our bank to ask about borrowing money to pay for this and my upcoming school fee ($600 for the summer class, more for the fall class). They could offer me a line of credit up to $6000, at in introductory rate of 3.9% for six months, after which it would be something like 9-11%. When my parents heard about it, they offered to pay for the repairs. Horyon and I talked about it, and decided to try fielding this one ourselves. We figured we could get the loan paid off withing three or four months if we kept our budget tightened down. It seemed like a good idea to build our independence.

When we brought this up with our bi-weekly Wednesday Bible study group, all three of them said that we should take my parents' offer. Matt asked if I were just being proud. They are all parents, and agreed that it would be a blessing for my parents if they could be allowed to pay this expense for us. When Horyon and I sort of sat quietly in reaction, they backed off, suggested that we talk and pray about it, then moved on to the study.

(We're studying the book of Daniel, which starts with some Vacation Bible School/Sunday School stories, and moves on into some deep, hard-to-follow, prophecies. A lot of us is leaving us all feeling like the dumb kid in the back of the physics class, wondering what's going on with all these wacky animals and statues and kingdoms and angels and demons and stuff.)

On the way home we decided to accept Mom and Dad's offer, so we called and told them so.

Because it was mostly pride. Or at least partly pride. Do we really need to see if we can "Make it on our own?" No. Not really. It really drove the point home when someone asked if I had any brothers or sisters. The answer is yes, but... it feels like no. And part of the problem there was pride, or so it seems to me. And I wondered, by saying no to my parents, do I make them feel like we're cutting them out?

And besides, as one of our friends pointed out, which would you prefer, a gift now, or a larger inheritance later?

I'd hate to be labeled "prodigal," but let's go for the present.

So Mom and Dad sent us an even $3000, which really works out for the best. Because my Cavalier (pronounced cuh val' ee AYE, thank you) needed new brake pads, to the tune of $170. It could also use new struts and a couple of new tires, but they told me those could wait. So they will.

So Mom, Dad, thanks. I do want us to be independent, but not because I want us to be parted from you. I just want us to be ready when Maxine needs her Mom and Dad to spring for a new transmission.

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A Brief Introduction

Roblog is my writing lab. It is my goal to not let seven days pass without a new post. I welcome your criticism, as I cannot improve on my own.

Here is a link to my cung post, which remains the only word which I have ever invented, and which has not, as far as I know, caught on. Yet.