You may think The Pony really doesn't care about helping people. And you'd be right. It was even verified by his interest inventory for the FAFSA. But one thing's for certain...IF you can befriend The Pony, he's as loyal and do-goody as his father.
At 9:59 last night, I got a text.
"It's really raining here. Which sucks."
"At least you're not camping. ARE you?"
[Let the record show that The Pony was invited on a camping trip. He's not a happy camper. Not much of a camper at all, in fact, the number of times he has ever been camping stands at ONE, I think, back when Hick took the boys ten miles up the road to stay in the 5th wheel camper at the state park overnight.
Anyhoo...The Pony went with a group of friends on Friday, who brought him a sleeping bag, and provided the tent. It started to drizzle when they got there. The Pony said he just sat outside talking, it wasn't that bad. But by mid-afternoon Saturday, he sent me a text that he was back at the dorm. "My friends said they were shocked that I stayed as long as I did!"]
"No. Not camping. I was trying to go to the store earlier, and my car wouldn't start. My friend [REDACTED] and her boyfriend came out to help jump it but halfway through it started raining and we couldn't get it to start right. I'm going to call AAA about it tomorrow unless Dad says to do something different. I'm texting him about it in a second."
"He went to bed. Good luck getting someone on a holiday. Has your car been acting up?"
[Let the record show that The Pony's car is a 2013 Nissan Rogue that had maybe 35,000 miles on it when we bought it after he totaled his OTHER 2013 Nissan Rogue on the way home for Thanksgiving.]
"No. It was perfectly fine. There was a USB cord plugged in when I drove it Saturday. I took [ALSO REDACTED] to the store and she had it charging her phone then. We never unplugged it but it wasn't connected to anything so it shouldn't have done it, but that's all I can think of."
[Let the record further show that The Pony, unlike his brother Genius (the once upon a time double-major electrical engineer candidate), does not have even a passing acquaintance with circuits and charges and whatnot, his area of expertise being chemical engineering.]
"Do you think it may take a jump when it's not raining? Did any of you know what you were doing?"
"I think that could be part of it. And it was raining too hard for us to keep trying."
"Was that charger thing left in since Saturday?"
"I unplugged it when I went down today. It was plugged into the USB slot, but not plugged into anything else."
"That's probably what did it."
"I'm pretty sure it is just the battery, but it was completely dead. I had to use the manual unlock on the car to get in. The lights came on when we had the batteries connected but it was raining too hard to do anything else. Like the dash lights, I mean. They came on and it tried to turn on, but I think it wasn't charged enough from the jump to get the engine going. It's just as well. In this rain I would not be safe driving around to get it recharged myself."
"I'm pretty sure the other car has to be running while you're starting yours. Too bad Dad is on a different sleep schedule than you. He can probably help you in the morning."
"Yeah. I can find another friend with jumper cables tomorrow if I need to. I don't think he sent me down with any. Or if he did I have to look for them. But the other car WAS running."
"I thought you had that kit with jumper cables. You could send him a picture of the hookup, and he could advise you."
"Okay. I'll call him when I get up. I'm not sure if the kit was in the old car and we forgot to take it out, or if it's in my room. My friend's boyfriend had them when I was starting to look."
"Did you look under that back thing, where your spare tire is? Guess you should have been more interested when Dad was trying to teach you all this before you left."
"I DID look. I didn't check every pocket since I couldn't find the button in the dark to pop open the back, so I had to lean over the back seat. I KNOW how to connect it! It was raining cats and dogs!"
"I shall probably weep for you tonight."
Anyhoo...there it was, 10:24 at night, my baby all alone nine hours away with no car. All because he was nice enough to take a friend to the store.
You know, a call from your college kid late at night about the weather isn't really about the weather.
Let the record show that this morning, The Pony called AAA and a guy came out to jump his battery and said it was new last year when we bought the used car, so he didn't need a new one. That he should drive it around to charge it, and if it doesn't start tomorrow morning, call him back, and then take it to the dealer, because the battery is under warranty.
The Pony sent me a text a few minutes after his jump, from Sonic, that he was out in his car, charging the battery. I made sure to find out that he was sitting at Sonic with it RUNNING. And that he doesn't mention to his friend that the USB was the reason for his calamity.