Sunday, May 4, 2008

Hitch #2


If you are traveling in the near future and happen to need a rental car, I'd like to suggest that you choose any rental company other than Hertz. As you can see, we ended up with a flat tire. I called Hertz and after 15 minutes on hold and then another 10 minutes arguing with the lady on the other end, Hertz agreed to send us some road side assistance... which never arrived. Luckily, these guys did...
They were the most amazing guys. They helped us take off the tire and put on the spare. Then they took the tire over to their shop, on the construction site, where they "plugged" the hole with a rubber plug. (I had never heard of plugging a hole in a tire. I thought people usually patched the hole in the tube.) This repair method was so fast. They also found two other plugs in the tire, but I suppose that is beside the point... Anyway, Maxi (on the left in the photo above) used soapy water and an air compresser to locate the hole. Then he used a tool that looked a little like a latch hook to push a pencil-sized rubber thingie into the hole. A quick slice with a razor blade to cut off the excess and the tire was done. They finished inflating it and put it back on the car as the seven of us just watched; our mouths open in amazement at how nice these perfect strangers were being to us.


After we thanked them profusely and tried to give them some money, Maxi asked us where we were headed. We explained that we were just out looking for a beach since our snorkeling trip had been canceled due to poor weather in Fajardo. (Yet another hitch.) Maxi told us that there were great beaches over by his house, which was about an hour away. "I'm heading home in about 10 minutes," he said, "Why don't you follow me. I can show you the beach." Crazy as it sounds, we did. And it was so worth it, too. Maxi took us to the most amazing beach in Manati, which is on the northern coast of Puerto Rico. Before he left us, he gave us his phone number and told us that if we had any trouble all we needed to do was give him a call and he could be back in 20 minutes. What a stroke of luck to have that flat. We met Maxi and he (and his buddies) took our misfortune and turned it into an wonderful day.

8 comments:

susan said...

true aloha spirit. i think you guys need to take this up with hertz, you were sent out in a car with BAD tires...was this a front tire? it already had two flats, that is what the plugs are for. we used them in hawaii, my sons did a good job of it. i am so glad that something problematic turned out so wonderful...lucky lucky

Marcia said...

Hope the rest of your trip is better. Bring us back some sunshine.

miss chris said...

:) That's wonderful! Yay for Maxi!
Yay for you! Enjoy!

clara said...

Truly, perfect to meet strangers who were there at the right time and were willing to have their pictures taken.

Shannon said...

Okay, so you are SO MUCH more TRUSTING than I am! But, I am usually a really good judge of character and as nice as these two fellas seemed, I probably would have gone too. I'm glad your hitch #2 turned out so well! By the way - the airplane wing - did you take that shot?!

Anonymous said...

I'm glad you have had good people watching out for you along the way! S & K will be so excited to see you.....and A TOO! Be safe.

The Pastoral Princess said...

Wow! What good fortune (even with the hitches!)...and a beautiful beach!! I am jealous!!!!!

muralimanohar said...

Sounds like you are bringing the nice out of people this trip. :D

What an amazing trip! Sounds fantastic!

(I've had my tire plugged before...Hertz definitely has some accountability sending out a tire that has needed at least three plugs now. :( )