Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Chapter 14 - THE LAVA CAR

This is Saturday.  We decided to drive into town and check out the farmer’s market and get the car washed.  We had seen the sign on the side of the road “Lava Car 350”  It was a simple sign, hand scribed on the piece of cardboard.  We turned the corner and drove to the end of the road.  The road turned to the right, so we followed.  Then the road made a left turn, and a few yards up that road, we saw the carwash. We saw a couple of cars parked, so we drove in.  The older fellow beckoned us into the first stall.
            You must understand that our car is a large sport’s utility vehicle, a Mitsubishi Montero.
            We climbed out of the car, and I found a chair of sorts over at the side, and Mel took the dog and sat on some fixtures just outside.  There were two very young boys, a youth and the adult who seemed to be the boss, working on the car.  They had a shop vacuum, a pressure hose, a bucket of suds and gum boots.  They started their work.
            Soon, a second car rolled in.  The adult took over on that car, while the younger men worked on our car.  They sprayed, vacuumed, scrubbed inside and out.  They took out the mats and held them against the far wall and brushed them.  When they had finished spraying, scrubbing, sudsing, rinsing and washing the car, they started over.  I have never seen a detailing shop do a more intense job of cleaning a car.  Every inch, inside and out was worked over three or four times.  They spent an intense hour working on that one car and in the meantime, several other cars were lined up, waiting their turn.  It was going to be a busy day at the Lava Car location. I am glad we arrived when we did.
            When we thought the boys were about done, and the car was shining, the boss came out of the back with a tin of polish, and started over.  Then all of that had to be rubbed and polished.  The final detail was some more spray that they put on the tires to make them shine.
            The boys left the car and we were nearly ready to leave.  Mel asked the price and the fellow said $4000.  That’s Colones, and equals $8.00 American.  Melaney gave him $5000, told him to keep the change, and they all smiled.  You want to bet they will remember us the next time we go to the Lava Car.  As she was paying them, she jokingly asked what colour the paint was under the white.  She had to repeat it a couple of times in her kind of Spanish, but they finally got the joke, and everyone laughed. (?Que color debajo de Blanca?—Mel)
Melaney told me on the way home that she had had her car detailed at Bubbles in Kelowna and it had cost $189. And she didn’t even get it waxed.
            By the time we arrived at the farmer’s market, they were closing up for the day.  It was almost noon.  We walked up the line of market stalls anyway.  There was one with many sizes of tacos which apparently hadn’t been popular, because there were a lot left.  There were also some beautiful flowers.  Some groups of Asian lilies and others that I didn’t recognize.  If I still had the large crystal vases that I had given away, I would have bought some.  I did ask Melaney to buy a cucumber.

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