Universe: Who wants to have their car breakdown?
Abby: Oooh, ooooh, me! Pick me!
Universe: You got it, baby!
Abby: But can we have it break down while I’m out and about?
Universe: I don’t see why not.
Abby: Oh, I know! Let’s do it the day I have a late therapy appointment. I’ll get out with only 40 minutes until the end of my shift!
Universe: Now you’re talkin’!
So, yeah, the car broke down on Thursday afternoon. And since we only have the one car, I had to call a cab.
At least it came quickly. I explained my situation, and the dispatcher was able to get one to me in six minutes. Luckily, I was only about three miles from my house because even that was $10 plus tip. Eesh.
Also luckily, it was a minor problem: dead battery. The mechanic checked the charging system to make sure it was okay. Everything checked out, so our bill was only $285, including the tow.
Of course, $285 is hardly pocket change. But ever since that $1,500 car bill last year, I steel myself for the worst.
That’s significantly easier to do now that we have the car fund. In the past, I’d fret every time we had to take it to the mechanic. How much would it be? How much would this set back our finances?
Now I can shrug and say, “Well, it’ll cost what it’s going to cost.” It’s a nice feeling.
It’s not that I want to withdraw funds, of course. I want them to stay in the account and make a nice big down payment when we do eventually need a car. But I know the funds are there, which vastly decreases my stress levels.
Similarly, our savings account is there to cover big bills. I do fret a bit about drawing from there. It’s so soothing to check the balance and see a safety net. We also need those funds for Tim’s teeth and new windows. But I know the money will cover most life surprises.
The repair bill has also reminded me that we’re saving more than I think. The last few months, we’ve been lucky to put away $300 a month into a Capital One 360 account. Given my raises and such, that’s kind of pitiful. Then I remember that another $400 goes into other accounts. It’s still not where I’d like it to be, but not too shabby.