I scheduled it for 8 a.m., hoping the car wouldn’t be out of commission for long because my wife was out of town. I cancelled the appointment when a hotel called at 7 a.m.
I delivered my car to the shop at 8 a.m. the following day. A hotel called at 10. The service manager said my car wouldn’t be available till the afternoon, but he would be happy to provide a loaner.
Auto shops pay little attention to loaners. Mine was a battered 1999 Volvo station wagon with 176,000 miles, the gas needle on empty, and an automatic transmission that paused for a few seconds before delivering power. Driving was a frightening experience compared to my tiny, nimble Honda.
I bought gas and lumbered onto the freeway, praying that Swedish engineering deserved its reputation. VIP parking at a downtown hotel was out of the question because valets refused to believe that an important person would arrive in such a disreputable vehicle. But everything worked out.
No hotel doctor should live alone.