I was in my hometown of St Louis last week.  There were a couple of issues that came up that I thought I’d vent about.  There isn’t necessarily any rhyme nor reason to it, they’re just little things I found bothersome.

    First, I rented a car while I was home.  Now, the auto rental place was kind enough to upgrade me to mid-sized from the compact/economy rate, as there were no smaller cars available.  This was great! The problem was not with the rental company at all.  The problem was that the car I got to drive (a 2006 Pontiac Gran Prix) had been damaged in an accident at some point earlier.  Whomever damaged it got some body work done and had it substantially repainted.  The only way we figured this out was because the right rear brake and signal did not work.  Lucky for me, I run an aggressive cross-check before changing lanes (a habit learned from substantial time on the Autobahns in Germany), so I never ran into any danger.  But who busts up a car and doesn’t take responsibility for it? If you’re going to get body work done to it, at least have the courtesy to get the critical electrical components working again, too!

    Second, I had to park near the exit of a different car rental agency (Avis) while I waited for my German in-laws to drive out so I could lead them to their hotel through an unfamiliar city.  I did a superb job parking, was in nobody’s way, and remained with the vehicle in case I needed to move it.  As it happened, the Avis security guard ended up directing me to move anyway.  I calmly explained my situation.  She didn’t care.  She told me several times I was blocking the exit.  I looked at her with as much incredulity as possible.  It was clear from any vantage point I was not in anyone’s way whatsoever.  No matter! She was in charge, and she would not be gainsaid.  Luckily for her, my in-laws appeared, and I was able to drive away before I had to get management involved. 

    I wish I could say that was all that bothered me, but that’s all I’ll write about for now.  This particular article has been in ‘Draft’ for two weeks now! 

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