Friday, November 27, 2009

Tires: Part II

On Friday night, we had a flat tire. Yes, one of our brand-new winter tires. Thankfully, we were close to home, and had just gotten off the highway. S went to get the jack and spare. The spare was also flat. (As a side note, this same exact thing happened to us in September as we were moving my stuff out of my apartment. Flat spare and everything. Ugh.)

Anyhow, this time I decided to call my roadside emergency service that I had in the US since I knew it was supposed to work in Canada too. Here is what I remember of the call:

Me: Hi, I am calling from Canada with a flat tire, can you help me?
Roadside Help Line Person: Let me check. (Pause.) Yes, we can. Where are you?
Me: Montréal, Québec.
Roadside Help Line Person: Uh...ok. Can you spell that?

At this point I suspected from the tone of her voice that she has never heard of Montréal. Or Québec, for that matter.

Me: Montréal. M-O-N-T-R-E-A-L. That's in Québec. Canada.
Roadside Help Line Person: What state?
Me: They don't have states here, they have provinces. It's in Québec province.
Roadside Help Line Person: Can you spell that?
Me: Q-U-E-B-E-C.


Roadside Help Line Person: Is there an abbreviation for that?
Me: QC
Roadside Help Line Person: That isn't in our system.
Me: Can you change the form to say Canada instead of US to try to see if that brings up the right initials?


Roadside Help Line Person: What is your zip code?
Me: (At this point I give her my 6 digit Canadian zip code comprised of numbers and letters, like they do it here.)

Medium length pause.

Roadside Help Line Person: Can I put you on hold?
Me: Ok.

Long time on hold. We are outside in the cold. At about 1 am. And only about a 10 minute walk from our house. Finally the person comes back to the line.

Roadside Help Line Person: Can you spell your city again?

At this point I gave up and told her, "Nevermind, we will take care of it ourselves." She sounded quite relieved about that. We walked home with the flat spare tire. The next day, S got a ride to take the flat spare to get air, then put it on the car and drove the car to get the real winter tire fixed. Turns out the tire was not damaged, thankfully. There was just a leak between the rim and tire.



  1. This is both totally hilarious, and extremely sad!

    And we apparently seem to share bad car karma. What are the odds that you find yourself with a dead car, during rush hour, on Decarie highway, TWICE in the same year? And yet.

  2. Sorry for the tire trouble, but you at least learn that your roadside assistance is worthless, in case you really needed it! :) Maybe you should switch companies!