Posted on December 19, 2021  (Last modified on December 22, 2021 )
3 minutes • 593 words
For a few weeks now I’ve been trying to get out for a visit to see my mom and brothers before Christmas. This weekend was finally going to be my chance. The only catch was that my engine had developed an exhaust leak so that whenever I turned on my heater, the car would fill with exhaust. This could be a really bad thing since it is only a couple of days until winter.
A couple of years ago, I had a brief moment of a mid-life crisis sort of thing and installed a header and custom exhaust on my Nissan Versa. I didn’t quite get the header tightened evenly and when I put it on I used the old exhaust gasket. Consequently, there ended up being a very small exhaust leak. It would have been a lot of work to take it apart again to reseat it, so I opted to leave it alone.
It was fine for a year and a half or so, but unfortunately it recently got worse. Now there was a danger of potentially causing a deep and permanent sleep from carbon monoxide exposure, so I finally took it to my mechanic to get it dealt with.
Ah, the things we do to still feel like we’re half our age and the costs we incur, like three plus hours at a mechanic’s shop rate!
I left Calgary with a couple of the kids when I finished work on Friday and I was glad that we experienced mostly bare and dry roads for the trip. I hadn’t done that drive at night in quite a few years.
We were accompanied by a beautiful silvery moon as we drove down Highway 22. It lit up the landscape and we could see the snow blanketed trees dotted across the rolling foothills. It reminded me of tree-filled scenes from some of my favorite Christmas cards that our family received when I was a kid.
The drive was mostly uneventful, though we saw multiple herds of elk on the sides of the road throughout the trip. Thankfully they stayed on the sides of the road as most times we did not see them until they were right beside us! I wouldn’t want to meet one of them head on in my little Nissan (or in any vehicle for that matter).
I also couldn’t believe how many transport trucks we saw on Highway 3 this trip. I knew there would likely be quite a few with the bridge washouts and highway closures at the coast, but I wasn’t expecting that many.
After a number of hours of driving and a couple of Tim Horton’s stops along the way to feed my coffee addiction and make sure I stayed awake, we rolled up to my mom’s house at about 12:30 AM on Saturday.
We had a good visit with the family and got to spend time with my two young nephews and my little niece. That was great since my kids are growing up fast and I kind of miss having little ones around sometimes.
While we were visiting, there was quite a snowfall so as with the trip out, we ended up leaving for Calgary later on Sunday to give the plow trucks a chance to clear the way for us a little bit.
We only saw one herd of elk on the sides of the road on the return trip. The moon was in the clouds and the roads were a little more icy, but it was a good drive all in all.