I woke up in the hotel, excited and a bit nervous about the VW buyback. There shouldn’t be any issues, but there could be. The car could be gone from the long-term parking at the airport where I left it. It could not start properly or make it to the dealership. There could be some unforeseen paperwork issue preventing the process. Since it had been far from smooth, there was some doubt within.
I drove to the airport without issue. I had left my old car in the long-term parking at $7 a day because I knew of no other place to leave it for an undetermined about of time. The dealer wouldn’t let it be stored there due to liability. It seemed to make the most sense to me and when I tell people they often say they agree and they wouldn’t even have thought of that, let alone a better spot. Not sure how true that is, but does make me feel better at least.
I drove into the parking lot and the lot I used was still open, opposed to the other which was full. This was good. Lesser good was a sign saying any cars left over 30 days needed the manager’s approval. I felt a pit in my stomach. It had been night time and I did not see the sign. I should have been more deliberate in checking, but I was anticipating 2 weeks, not over 4. I thought about the massive costs of it being towed and stored for days if not a week as the car had been there about 40 days. At least I left with extra time to try and address such issues.
I drove through the parking lot and felt a big sigh of relief seeing my car where I left it. Better yet was a parking spot right next to it! I took out my backpack, placed my key in it and took the other key out. Switched cars and it turned on! Things were going according to plan.
As I left I gave the ticket to the attendant, a lady in her mid to late 50s, and she put the ticket in per usual then saw the screen and went, “oh my!”. That cracked me up and I noted what a fun expression it was. I had anticipated the price already so I wasn’t as surprised. I drove the car without issue to the dealer with 30 minutes to spare. With the free time, I even cranked out a blog.
It was time to meet with the VW representative and it took about 10 total minutes, no issues and that was it. Done deal. Well, it’d take a few days for the money to get to the account, but other than that done deal. Massive relief, except for a tiny bit of edge until the money was in my account. That’s how I described it to my family.
I noticed the shuttle was gone. I waited a few minutes and after a bit, I saw the driver walk in. I caught him during his walk and asked for a shuttle ride. He asked for a few minutes and I said ok, certainly no rush. After a bit, he came back and said he was ready. We walked out and got in the car. He asked who, as in which service rep I was working with. I told him no one, as I was just finishing my buyback process, but had bought a car from them earlier and now needed a ride. He said alright to that, which was a mini hurdle I overcame. Then he asked where and I told him the airport.
I wasn’t sure how this would be taken as it’s a bit unique. As I type this now, I realize there are many employees which work at the airport and it shouldn’t be too crazy. Anyways he asked why the airport and I told him the story the entire story of the car crapping out. My need to get a new car to continue the journey while dealing with the paperwork along the way and the epic 15-hour drive back to finish things up. He was a good audience.
I then made the familiar drive leaving Wisconsin. I was feeling victorious of sorts. This mental hurdle and hassle had been overcome. I had seen a sign for Cheese Castle or something of the sorts and being a fan of cheese, it had caught my attention when first in Wisconsin and now again.
The first time I was in no mood for such exploratory ventures. I had a car issue to deal with. Now was a different time with a different mindset. I rode that victorious vibe to celebrate with a little tourist stop. I had been told I should try spotted cow beer and Wisconsin cheese. I had previously reached out to the brewery but didn’t get a response. This cheese castle place was cool but failed to live up to the (unrealistic) image I conjured up in my head from the decision to walk through the door.
I went around and sampled two cubes of about 7 different types of cheeses. Then I ordered up some cheese curds and adjacent in another section under the same roof was a pub of sorts. I got a spotted cow and could eat my cheese curds there. The beer was fine, crisp lager style. I personally believe people like it because it is local and not too far of a deviate from a mainstream beer. At this pub, there was Ritz crackers or similar style, circling this bowl of spreadable cheese. There were a few around the staple-shaped bar. You bet I had more than one cracker from the one closest to me. I balanced the sides of eating some but without being ridiculously greedy. For the curious that turned out to be around 2, then 5 on a little accompanying paper boat, then after more time another 4. The timing really helps in these situations or so I think.
After this cheesy tourist stop, it was now time to head to Ohio to complete my meetings for that state. Those events and possible shenanigans shall be covered in another blog!