So, when last we left our intrepid housewife, she was in the middle of assuaging her car-repair woes with tales of a grand morning of butt-freezing beach adventures.
Here's the scoop on Homer:
There are close to a thousand different ways that a Honda Odyssey's emission system malfunction indicator light can trigger. (says Dave, at Honda). He said one of the most common was a loose gas cap. I didn't hold out much hope that *that* was the cause, as I was dangerously close to empty, and hadn't touched my gas cap for nearly a week, but that's what crossed fingers are for, right?
Not the gas cap.
Apparently, small forest creatures (and small woodland creatures that have invaded urban and suburban habitats) often seek shelter on cold stormy nights in the driest, warmest places that they can find. And those places might be under the hood of a vehicle that has just driven home late at night (or not so late at night) and left in the driveway with its front end radiating IR radiation, announcing to said little creatures that there is room at the inn.
And those same little forest creatures, which may or may not have naked little tails (shudder!) that make the likes of me shriek and head for high ground, seem to have a fondness for the wires that radiate out of the emissions sensor housing. So much so, in fact, that Honda keeps the one particular part in stock, they have so much call to replace it.
So, as I'm forking over $384, Dave says, ever so kindly, "Well, I had a customer in here last week who had just had to pay over a thousand to have their ENTIRE electrical hub repaired, because of how the rats had chewed the wires. And then a week later? They had the same problem that you had. And they couldn't figure out why it wasn't covered under warranty. Unfortunately, warranties don't cover rats."
I shuddered, "So I have rats? Yuck. I guess this is the price I pay for parking in the driveway instead of the garage..."
He shook his head, "These folks with the double whammy? They kept their car in the garage. It was the engine damage that was their warning sign that they had a rat problem. Until then, they swore they didn't have rats. After this? They brought in an exterminator."
I shuddered again.
I hate rats.
Anyways. There's my Epic Tale of Homer's Electrical Odyssey.
Back to horses. Which are much better than rats.
I truly thought I was going to turn into a foggy, damp popsicle while I waited for the horses to come back up the beach. Turns out it took longer than planned...
Mom! Guess what!?!?!?! When we got down to the end of the beach, that lady on the black horse? Her horse decided to lie down and ROLL! It was scary, and freaky, and kind of hilarious, too. That's why we're so late. I'm sure glad it wasn't Fiesta that rolled. I would be SO MUCH COLDER! Like, even colder than I am now. Why didn't I bring my gloves on the ride? I had them in the car? I can't believe myself.
So I stopped at Starbucks, after safely navigating my way back to the parking lot at the top of the bluffs, and got a tray of hot chocolates. Kids cocoas, extra hot. I love the $1.25 drinks. Everyone can have one, and warm up.
And then I went back to the ranch to wait for them.
I messed around while I was waiting. Hello artsy photographing with the shallow depth of field...
Ooh! Old horse-shoes. Love them!
They were late getting back. They must have really walked slowly. Apparently, the creek that they have to cross is really swollen, and is deep to walk through. Usually it's about an inch deep and a foot and a half wide.
But eventually everyone returned to the ranch safely, and full of stories.
I gave the girls horse-cookies (oatmeal, molasses and raisin) to feed to their horses as treats (after making sure it was OK), so now the horses like the girls best of all, too.
And we had such a good time, I'm going to head out there tomorrow, with a Christmas Card for the ranch.
What do you think?
Still to come: What we did after the ride!