Sunday, January 4, 2009

A Birth ... and a Death

Much has happened in the past two days since I said we were going out shopping for a new car.

After a ton of research and getting feedback from my brother in another town who has a Matrix, we decided to go ahead with a spanking new 2009 Toyota Matrix in a sunburst colour. It's a sturdier car than the old Echo but still is very fuel-efficient, which is a must for my commute to work.

We got a sweet deal - maybe it helped to have a really good relationship with the sales guy. When we looked at the Matrix for the first time a week ago Monday, the other sales guy didn't offer us any discounts and said we would get, at best, $4500 for the trade in. Our sales guy negotiated an extra $400 on the trade in and gave us an extra $600 discount on the vehicle price from his dealer rate, so it worked out well for us. Plus we get a free 500L gas card as part of the purchase. Sweet.

Now to the next part... We had dropped off Pene's van at the other dealership so it could get an oil change and a couple of cosmetic repairs, then went on to the Toyota dealership. After we were done with the paperwork for the new car, we went back to pick up the van. Upon leaving the dealership for home, Pene led the way out in the van while I tagged along behind in the old Echo. The traffic was rather heavy as it's a main throughway with plazas, restaurants and malls on both sides of the road.

Finally a break in traffic came up and a pickup truck was turning into the driveway besides us, so Pene moved out to make a left turn onto the road. Literally out of nowhere (from the plaza across from us, actually), a car plowed right into Pene's side of the van. Fortunately, the direct impact was on the tire instead of on the driver's door, so it could have been much worse than it actually was.

The end result was that the van is undriveable now with the wheel half-gone, the axle ripped loose, the driver's side caved in, and I'd bet the engine has been pushed around inside the hood. Pene banged her head on the ceiling grip, her ribs were hit by the armrest and she may have a concussion, but in the end, she came out of it surprisingly well with only a headache and a sore neck to deal with right now. Could have been considerably worse if the impact was 2-3 feet further down from the tire, so we're thankful that was all it was. Pene declined treatment from the ambulance as she felt strong enough at the time, then went to the doctor yesterday morning as she woke up more sore/stiff with a major headache from the bump on her head and the neck.

I, of course, had a front-row seat of the whole thing being in the car behind her, so it was a pretty helpless feeling seeing that car come out at the last minute and then watching it plow right into my wife. I only had enough time to say "wha, what?" before the accident happened, then of course the traffic picked up again so it was a while before I was able to cross the street into the median to check things out with the accident site.

So naturally it all had to happen on a late Friday afternoon with the van dealership and the insurance agent both being closed on Saturday. Typical timing. I'm taking tomorrow off from work so I can help out with all the things that need to be done, such as following up with the insurance folks (new car ... and accident!), getting a replacement van, rental car, etc. Going to be fun dealing with the insurance folks, hopefully it won't kill the insurance rates on the new car.


Pam Kersting said...

Oh Pepe!! So sorry to hear about Pene's accident! That really SVCKS! I hope she's alright! You must have had a real fright sitting behind that and watching the whole thing! Sending best wishes to both of you. Congratulations on the new car -- your'e going to look really good in it! Scarlett

Puffy said...

OMG! What a helpless feeling to watch this happen to your wife! I hope she's ok, with no residual after-effects. Good thing the kids weren't in the car, too.

It seems like you got a great deal on the car, including the trade-in. At least the trade-in wasn't in the accident, too!

Pepe said...

You know, it's funny... after everything got settled down and we sat down to wait for the cops to arrive to process the accident scene (a whole hour), I remarked to Pene, "At least you made sure you were driving the van instead of the car, so it wouldn't impact the trade-in for the new car." She got a laugh out of that one.

Then later on with the cop, she said, "I should have let Pepe go first" and he laughed as it sounded like she wanted me to go ahead and get smashed up instead of her.

maroonclown said...

Holy Heck! Glad to hear Pene is okay and with her sense of humour intact.

Time for a brother or sister for your new Matrix?

Starshine said...

Oh Pepe that must have been terrifying for you. Hope that Pene is feeling less shocked and banged up now.

On the other hand, your new car looks great!

Molaholic said...

Oh my what a day!

I'm glad to hear Pene is OK (while still hurting some -- sorry).

Hopefully, writing about it will be a catharsis for you -- and maybe (though I don't know how), some day you can look back and laugh (well, perhaps look back and not cry...)

Car does look cool. Too bad it isn't blue, though.

Swami said...

Geez, what a scary moment for both of you! I'm glad Pene is okay! I hope the sore neck goes away quickly - sometimes whiplash takes a while to make its presence known.

Nice car.
Nice color!

Those gas cards are great - Mr Swami got one with his Honda only his is good for one year, and gives him 5 cents off per gallon for up to 25 (?) gallons per purchase.

~Nutz said...

OMG, yikes! So glad Pene is OK.