My son, the intrepid snow reporter for KGMI – among other things – spent most of last week on the road, checking conditions and finding trouble spots and areas for others to avoid. He would never be able to do this, except for his trusty old “Heavy Chevy”, a pickup truck that has seen a lot of action over the years. It has big tires, and a noisy muffler, and already is in less than pristine conditions so is available for risk-taking.
The perfect vehicle for snow reports…
Last week, Heavy Chevy was getting a work out, and as conditions continued to need monitoring, Old Trusty faltered a bit. As Dillon was delivering one of his co-workers to her home in Ferndale, the truck started fading, and they limped off I-5 to a gas station. Dillon ended up getting towed home that night, and spent the rest of the evening thawing out the carburetor before Heavy Chevy was in working form again.
Concerned that he would lose his mobility if some systems on the truck were not tuned-up, Dillon intended to get the necessary parts in town the next day. He had finished his morning reporting trek around the county, and was warming up the truck to head into town when he decided to put the chains on. During this operation, he bumped the valve stem on a front tire which cracked and immediately started hissing. He quickly plugged the gap, but then he was stuck! If he let go, the tire would go flat, and he could not get to town without that tire on the truck to go fix the tire on the truck or anything else!
He couldn’t even leave the front tire to go get help. After some tricky maneuvering, he got his phone out of his pocket without letting go of the valve stem, and called Tiffany, who was in the house. They had to figure out a way of keeping air in the tire long enough to get to town – a mere 2 miles, but it could just as well have been 10 – to fix the tire and maintain their mobility.
What to do? What to do?
(And here comes my moment of triumph…)
Dillon to Tiffany: “Didn’t Mom give me some glue in my stocking? Find that and bring it out here, but be ready to head for town right away because if this works, we’ll be in a hurry.”
Tiffany found the glue: “Quick Grip” often touted by my blog friend Julie Jacobs, for her most challenging craft projects. And, I admit, I didn’t think the boys would be too excited about getting a tube of glue in their stocking – but hey, it was practical, and nice to have on hand.
Little did I know…
Dillon globbed the glue on the valve stem, and they waited for it to set up…not a sure thing in 18* weather! He finally dared to let go of the valve stem, and it held…no leaking. They gave a little more time to let it thicken, and see if it would keep holding…Then they jumped in the truck and headed for town in a hurry! They had to go through a few small drifts, and the berm the snow plow left at the intersection, not to mention more ice and snow on the road. They kept Heavy moving and were hoping they wouldn’t run out of air before they reached Zylstra Tire…Success! They had enough air to drive into the shop, and there found that the tire had not leaked a bit during their trek! They explained their situation to the tire guys, who were quite amazed that they had been able to make it – a broken valve stem and glue, through snow drifts? Amazing!
When the tire guy went down to look at the problem, he touched the valve stem; it gave way, and immediately, the tire went flat…
But they were in town, where they could fix the tire, and get back on the road to continue reporting for the safety of Whatcom Countians -- all because Mom(that would be me) had put a tube of glue in Dillon’s stocking!!
I pretty much rock.
And now all Dillon’s friends want to know where he got that great glue…so if you see a bunch of farm trucks, and 4 wheel drives in the parking lot at Michael’s Craft Store you’ll know why.