Tag Archive: zsa-zsa

Beware: This is a long post. It was such an experience that I could not leave out details.

I am not kidding when I say that the other day I asked loudly how it feels to be towed by a truck, and that today that question was answered.

In a previous post, I have mentioned that our dear Zsa-Zsa, our Hyundai Grace had a bout of breakdown in NLEX. Since then, we never really got to use her regularly because problems in her never seem to end. But lately, we found a good mechanic who helped Zsa-Zsa get back on her feet. The aircon of the van seemed to lose freon, enough to leave us sweating like pigs in a hot day like this. But fair enough, we get to use her everyday to and fro work since its repair last week.

My Kuya Mike (eldest bro) will be moving to BF Paranaque from his current Mandaluyong apartment. He has been wanting to use Zsa-Zsa to move his things little by little but I have been very reluctant because I am unsure if Zsa-Zsa is already in good running condition. But he’s very insistent so much so that I gave in the other night.

He called me yesterday to tell stories about what happened to them en route to Paranaque, that they had a hard time driving the van and the engine stopped more than ten times. I was like, ten times? Barrage of questions came out but he said, oh the van is okay. In fact, it ran very well save for the engine stops we had, the driver wasn’t just used to driving vans kasi daw.

So this morning, hubby and I left early for work because the company has a General Assembly at 7:30A.M. Imagine our dismay when five minutes into driving, well dressed and very fresh, Zsa-Zsa suddenly stops just as we are about to go up the Makati-Mandaluyong Bridge. Hubby and I looked at each other, our minds asking each other, did Zsa-Zsa just die on us for no reason at all? I thought, WTF! This is not happening. Hubby pressed on the hazard button, but no, its not working. He tried to start the engine, no nothing, not even a spurting sound. We were on the verge of climbing the bridge such that we were hanging there, like in the movies, when the cars are about to go down the cliff. That feeling too, exactly.

I went down and looked for big stones to prevent the van from going downhill and hitting other cars (at this instance, hubby’s foot is aching for pressing hard on the brakes, because the darn handbrake just wouldn’t work!). I asked myself why aren’t there stones anymore on the streets? Only garbages. Blah! I didn’t give up and saw a big one after I went down the bridge (thankful for the staircase for commuters) and placed it under the tires of Zsa-Zsa. Hubby then happily removed his foot from the brakes.

Some few minutes before I went down to look for stones, a car behind us and an Isuzu Crosswind bumped each other. I imagine the frustrations and dismay of both  drivers. I can see in their faces that they want to blame us but we were in the right most portion of the bridge, and we were not really obstructing their way, if they would be vigilant enough to avoid us.

Then came the endless phone calls to everyone we know about what we can do. Hubby called his brother Patrick and asked for the number of the towing service near our place, Viray Towing Service. BIL then called up the towing service, and voila! About 10 minutes after, the towing service is there.

The MAPSA officer with the name of Navotas on his shirt was very helpful. He even checked the van and told us it was the battery connection which encountered problem. He tried fixing it but we left all our tools at home. Another MAPSA officer then arrived and bullied his way around us, saying that we should be towed by a Makati  accredited towing service. I told him its up to us to choose any towing service we like, after all, this is not illegal parking or anything of that sort. He retorted:

“Ma’am, paliwanag ko po sa inyo ha, meron pong towing ang Makati, kaya dapat yun ang magtow sa inyo. San ba kayo?”

I told him we live in Mandaluyong and that we opted for the Mandaluyong towing service. He insisted that we should take the Makati towing service, even instructing Officer Navotas to call them. He turned to me and asked again, “San ba kayo, ma’am?

At that instance, I realized he was referring to my work, or something like that. So with much bravado, I introduced myself, saying the magic word “A-T-T-Y” and mentioned the company I am connected with. Hubby and I were both wearing the official shirt of the company so I guess he should have known that. After that, he hurriedly left the place, hoping he would go unnoticed. I thought like, what an a-hole. Really, what’s with Filipinos and titles anyways? Maybe if I was just an ordinary employee, he would have bullied us until we are forced to take their towing service.

I then questioned their authority to be there because we were still within Mandaluyong area, thus outside their jurisdiction already. The friendly Officer Navotas then humbly said that they were just assisting us. I almost said, yeah, maybe you, but not that a-hole there. Ugh!

To cut the long story short, we were towed all right. It felt funny, different and embarrassing. Well, not to others, but to ourselves. I felt embarrassed that I have always looked at those people inside towed vehicles in a funny sort of way, now it happened to me. It was tiring and difficult to manage all the stress that comes with it. So from now on, I will not teasingly look at those people anymore, but will empathize with them. We came late for work and missed the General Assembly but we came in with a new experience and new stories to tell.

Lessons I learned today (and tips on what to do if it happens to you):

1. Save the contact numbers of a reliable towing service in your cellphone or planner. Thats the first thing we worried the most. Good thing we have families around who can look for numbers we need on days like this. But to save from hassle, its better to have those numbers handy.

2. You always need cash in case of emergency. If you don’t, you will not be able to remedy the situation. Hubby and I are always used to bringing  just 100 bucks or so in our wallets whenever we drive to work, thinking we would not need money along the way. Today is one of the few days we carried extra cash. Call it tough luck.

3. Negotiate the price of the towing service. I called the number given by my BIL even if he already called it to know how much the fee is. As we all know, towing fees are quite pricey. So when the person I talked to told me that the fee is P1,700.00, I said whhhaaat? For few kilometers? They said they have a fixed price. I haggled with them, and asked for the person who is authorized to give discounts. After much haggling, mentioning that the distance where we will be towed from up to our house is not even 4 kilometers, even saying we are just “kapitbahay”, he agreed to give it to us for P1,200.00. I felt I could have negotiated for a lower price, but I was too stressed to do that so I agreed na rin.

All in all, it was an enlightening experience. But once is enough to last a lifetime. Although hubby and I were laughing about the experience, I wouldn’t want the same experience anymore. At least my question has been answered, and I will stop wondering from now on. 🙂


Holy week last year, I was in my third trimester already and did not want to travel far. Hence, hubby and I just stayed at home and watched DVDs. We just went Bisita Iglesia on Good Friday and enjoyed the silence of our home the rest of the week.

Today is much different. We have a tumbling little darling at home who endlessly blabbers and demands attention most of the time that make me doubt if I will be able to rest. It would probably be a luxury for me this long weekend to be able to use the internet without a frantic yelling from Ira. Add that to the fact that her Ate is not so reliable as the previous one.

I am happy though that Ryan expressed his intentions to do Bisita Iglesia again this Friday, except that Zsa -Zsa doesn’t seem cooperative these days. All in all, I just want us to rest and I just want Ryan to be able to catch up on his review  for his upcoming LOMA exam this May. Ate Kriselle’s sudden disappearance has caused a lot of frenzy in our lives that many things suffered setbacks. We are at the point of recovering from these setbacks right now and I am hoping this Holy Week can be a good start.

My Ima is probably wallowing about the fact that I am reluctant to go home to Pampanga because of Ryan’s review. My dear husband did not really ask it from me, but I took it upon myself to decide to stay at home for his review. Maybe we can make it up with Ima next time. Maybe next year we can come with a better plan for Holy Week for the entire family. Ira will be a little bigger and we can bring her almost anywhere.

This week though is meant to be for quiet time. It is meant to be for praying, for assessing our values and for praising God for all the blessings we have despite our being sinners. I am not a pious person and I hardly qualify as an upright one. But I try my best to work on the relationships I have with the people around me.

Right now, I am just quietly raising my thoughts to God and am infinitely asking for forgiveness for all my iniquities. I pray that I can be a better daughter to Him and be a better human being for everyone else. I pray that I can truly inculcate in me the lessons of this Holy Week and imbibe it not just today but for the rest of the year, or of my life. I pray for everyday guidance because my life is not just about me anymore, but it is also about another little person whom I have brought out into this world. 🙂

For all of us, I hope we can all just pray intently and renew our values. For those who have chosen to spend the week out of town, may it be in a beach or in a pilgrim, I pray for their safety and I hope that this week’s lessons be with them wherever they go. I hope we can all take this opportunity to just be calm and be quiet and forget about the hassles of this world. For several days, we get to take a leave from work and be with our loved ones. That in itself a big blessing from God.

Have a truly holy week everyone! May we all be continually blessed by God. 🙂

Holy Week

Why the name? Well, she was initially lent to us by my ever so kind maternal Uncle (now Uncle-Ninong after my wedding) before hubby and I got married. We were waiting for the time to return it, when I figured I’d call her Zsa-Zsa, because of the song Hiram. (I know, I know, its corny! :P)

Talks between my Tatay and Uncle Medel were on-going if he was going to sell it na lang since it was really up for sale anyway. (Note: Uncle and Tatay are both in the U.S…the reason why van was up for sale) After several weeks, (or was it months?!?) it was decided Zsa-Zsa will be ours. The factors considered were the overhauling we had on Zsa-Zsa and the seemingly unending stress brought about by the succeeding repairs.

In reality, she has been with us for more than a year now. We used her when we moved from Manila to Mandaluyong (yes, by heavens’ frugal name, we did not hire a truck!). Hubby and Kuya Jme insisted that the van can take all our things, one stuff at a time. After getting tired with driving, hubby realized hiring a truck would have been a better option. (oh men, really!) She has been to Lubao, Pampanga (Ima’s hometown) several times already and she can readily take the whole family in, my brothers and their families included! She has been the companion of the family for the business venture. Hubby and I use her to get to and from work everyday. We use her during Sundays when we go to the church and mall. She has been very reliable when I was hospitalized and when I was to give birth to Ira.

there's zsa-zsa parked outside the villa we stayed in at fontana. she was too big for the car port so we asked her to stay outside. plus, she was the one often used to go to and from the pool and the basketball court.

Really, she has become part of the family. Of course we dream of getting a shiny new car soon, but I never once thought of abandoning her. But of course, like any aging vehicle, I would have to accept one day that she cannot stay with us forever.

Recently, we had to change the aircon compressor, and whadya guess? The price of the compressor was skyrocketing! But we had to do it lest Ira sweat herself crazily each time she rides Zsa Zsa.

Around September of 2009, as hubby and I were on our way to work (coz we work for the same company, yey! Read: More Time Together), we were hit by a JMK bus, the one plowing the Baclaran-Ayala route. After a quick demand letter from moi, the bus operator cooperated with the fixing of Zsa-Zsa. Until now though, we haven’t got the cheque yet.

After coping up with the monetary effects of changing the compressor, we had to change brake pads and the rotary. We noticed that the strange sound was gone and she was up and running again like nothing happened to her. We used her for our trips to Pampanga for the recent Christmas and New Year and there seemed to be no problem.

Our Ninang Baby and family are visiting from the U.S. and they have needed several times the services of our good ole’ Zsa-Zsa. She has been very considerate with them until she broke down last night. Story in my next post. I am still stunned as to what to do next with her.

I love Zsa-Zsa to pieces although I may have said bad things to her in the past when I felt she was makulit with the aircon. As a mom, I feel like she is my daughter. And as she is badly sick right now, I am praying that she gets well soon. I can do  away with the commute for the meantime as we live nearby, for as long as Zsa-Zsa gets better.

Now my problem is just the money to use for the fixing. No overhauling needed, please! *fingers crossed.