Ignorance is…

I (mostly) have a positive outlook on life. I don’t believe in conspiracy theories, I don’t think people are out to get me, I think (most) people mean well. No matter what hurdles I’ve encountered, I’ve made every effort to assess the situation and spring toward resolution. While I can get through most challenges, there are some situations I need to accept for what it is.

When my Touareg broke down, leaving me stranded late at night while towing Airstream Bambi, it was stressful but the the silver lining was being within a mile from friends and in a familiar city. This situation could have been far worse but it wasn’t.

While I waited for the dealership to get back to me on the problem, the week felt long and stressful. It didn’t start out that way.

When the VW service manager politely informed me they could not figure out the exact problem, I thought, ok I’ll just see what the experts find out. Another day went by and he informed me there could be a problem with the fuel pump. He forewarned it could take up to two weeks to fix since it’s a major operation. He also let me know that he didn’t have any loaner vehicles available and so he suggested I call VW customer care to see if they could help.

I thought, ok we’ll see how this works out. I won’t anticipate a problem that isn’t real yet. I was disappointed but realized this was out of my control and I needed to just wait and while they figured out the issue.

When friends and colleagues asked me what was wrong with the car, I told them and the majority thought the dealer was taking advantage of because I’m female or that the dealer is backed up with other repairs and putting my case last. Neither one of these scenarios had entered my mind but as I considered what others said to me, I began to get anxious. Was the dealer really taking advantage of me? Am I being stalled because they are backed up? Why would they lie to me?

On Thursday, I connected with the VW Customer Care “Touareg White Glove” service. Joe, a regional case manager was assigned to me. He called late Friday (as promised) and told me that the entire fuel system needed to be replaced. This significant issue was not a result of my wrong doing or problem with the car. The car takes diesel fuel and it is likely that one of the stations where I filled up had contaminated fuel. It’s difficult to know which station could have had the issue since I try my best to fill up “designer” fuel stations. The bottom line is things like this happen and sometimes there is no way to prevent it. 

Joe was extremely helpful and explained the repair itself will take just one or two days but some of the parts are on backorder. However, he said he would personally locate the parts from VW’s massive inventory system and get them shipped to the dealer to expedite the wait time. He also offered to provide me with a rental car (one that’s comparable to my Touareg) and help with anything else that may come up while I am away from home. I told him I need to go shop for clothes since I only packed for a week and he jokingly said he would write me a check to go buy clothes. Joe also said if I got tired of waiting around in Santa Barbara, I could go back home and he would ship the car when ready.

While I was waiting for an answer this week, I never doubted that people were trying to resolve this problem. And I didn’t really feel stressed about it. I knew things would get resolved somehow, by trusting the experts who were working toward resolution. It was when well intentioned friends and colleagues offered their perspectives which ended up making me doubt the situation.

I may be overly optimistic. I may put too much faith in people. But so far, knowing I control my own reaction and perspective helps me to live a happy life. A little ignorance can go a long way and I choose to believe that most people want to do the right thing and people are willing to take care of one another.

And in the meantime, I visualize Touareg and Bambi being together again.

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