Monday, November 20, 2006

Running (or How I Crippled Myself)

Probably due to the inspiration of seeing our good friends Joe and Liz go for a run before breakfast while staying with us this past weekend, Sue and I decided that it'd be fun if we went for a trail run at Green Lakes on Saturday. The air was cool and damp, and it felt great to be out running on the soft trail. Well, that is, it felt great for about one and a half miles.

Now, please realize that I believe the last time I went for a real run was during soccer practice - eighteen years ago. Sure, I've been racing a bicycle for fifteen of those years, but there are all sorts of little muscles you don't use on the bike that get pounded while running. Halfway around the lakes, I began to feel that something was going to snap if I didn't start walking. I alternated between walking and running for the remainder of the three-mile path. By the end, my legs felt nicely tenderized, and it really was great to be out on a pleasant trail in the fresh air with Sue (who, by the way, kicked my butt and ran much more of the trail than I did).

Sunday, old memories of soccer practice came flooding in. Back then, I'd attend the late-August practices and run miles and barely be able to walk the next day. This was much the same, except far less exercise was required to elicit a similar response.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Surprise at the Dealership

I went to the dealership Friday evening to pick up the car. They had agreed to fix a slight oil leak under warranty and a few other bits. Being a big labor job to dig that far into the engine, I asked them to replace the timing belt, pulleys, and water pump as preventive maintenance. It's a good idea to replace things run by the timing belt when the belt is replaced because a bad bearing in any of those parts could reduce the life on the new belt, break it, and bend lots of expensive parts in the engine. I arrived Friday and found the bill to be less than I had anticipated.

I scanned down through the work log to see what had been done. Air bag sensor replaced in rear seat - no charge. O2 sensor replaced - no charge. Cam seals replaced - no charge. Good so far. Timing belt and pulleys replaced - charge to customer.

I started shaking my head at that point because, as I had suspected, it looked like they had not replaced the water pump as I asked. I turned the page to find, "Water pump found leaking - replaced no charge."

Whoa. Let me get this straight. I asked for something to be replaced on my dime, and instead the dealer replaced it for free. They could have easily charged me and I would have happily paid never knowing the difference. How often do you see that sort of honesty at a garage, especially at a dealership?

So if you're an Audi owner in the Syracuse area, head on out to Roger Burdick Audi at the Drivers' Village in Cicero and feel confident that you're going to get an honest shake from the service department. Kudos to them for the great customer service!