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Budget - you get what you pay for.

We weren't able to leave until Sunday night around six - there was just too much to get finished up. But, we got it done. There was a horrific downpour right as we (almost) finished loading the truck - I got drenched putting the last few items in and my clothes were wet clear until bedtime.

We stopped at a Wendy's for dinner before we got on the road, and then hit the freeway northbound. As soon as I got up to about 65, the truck began swaying violently from side to side, so badly that I honestly thought we were going to tip over. I was fighting to keep the vehicle upright and trying to stop the harmonic motion with compensatory steering, but it was almost a losing battle. Rolling a fully-loaded van at 65 on a busy freeway would have been death. As it was, we just about had heart attacks anyway - but we were thankful to have been spare death or disaster.

After we got pulled over and calmed down a bit, we called Budget roadside assistance, and got the answer that a dispatcher would call us back in 30 minutes to tell us what to do. We decided to trundle ahead - slowly. Budget's dispatcher called back in an hour and a half, and told us that there was really nothing we could do until Monday morning. Not surprising. We made it as far as Moorefield, WV that night, where we stayed at the South Branch Inn - a very pleasant motel that was just where we needed it when we got tired.

The next morning we got back on the road at 11, after recovering from our exhaustion somewhat. We drove as far as Keyser, WV where we had lunch at Denny's and called Budget again and tried to find a shop that would fix the truck for us somewhere along the route to Detroit. They told us there was a place in Keyser, Truck Enterprises, Inc., that could take care of us. Google Maps, unfortunately, got the location wrong and it took us an hour and about 35 miles of lumbering up and down mountain roads to find the place - only to be told that they couldn't help us - they were too busy. The service manager had told the Budget dispatcher that on the phone, but Budget sent us there anyway... and it turned out this place only worked on Semis anyway. We were not happy!

I used the phone at the repair shop to call Budget once more. Every time we call, we're told we have to wait for another dispatcher to call us back. West Virginia is not famous for Verizon connectivity, so we spent a lot of time playing phone tag with them. By the time we had crossed from West Virginia into Maryland and back across the border to West Virginia again, Budget gave us the name of a repair shop that was 30 minutes behind us. I told them we were driving to Wyandotte, Michigan tomorrow and wanted a shop there. She tried to talk me into waiting, but I had had enough of their nonsense - hopefully Tuesday will get us to a place that can get us fixed. The fellow in Keyser told me that based on a visual inspection, the front wheels were pigeon-toed and the sway-bar bushings were shot.

We stopped for dinner at a Texas Roadhouse where I enjoyed a prime rib with a sweet potato and steak fries, and ToniAnne had ribs. We pulled into a Motel 6 in Crafton, PA where I ran into an absolute nightmare - the details are too unpleasant to re-live - and we ended up staying at a different location by the airport. There we had a comfortable king bed and a good rest until this morning. We are praying for safe roads and smooth sailing - as long as I stay at about 55, I can keep the swaying under control, but it's still nerve-wracking as I never know when the rocking will start up again.

Send us good thoughts and positive energy!

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Aug. 17th, 2010 12:54 pm (UTC)
Ugh- Will do! And I consider myself warned about Budget Roadside 'Assistance'!
Aug. 17th, 2010 01:05 pm (UTC)

I hope the road is smoother ahead for you, and you can get that van fixed. :-/
Aug. 17th, 2010 04:45 pm (UTC)
coal in the boiler burnin'up bright
rolling and a-rocking through the night...

Hope the rest of the journey pans out easier.

Aug. 17th, 2010 06:34 pm (UTC)
Good gravy! Find the nearest Budget office and demand a different truck! That thing should be taken off the road permanently.
Aug. 17th, 2010 11:07 pm (UTC)
My family has used U-Haul since the late 70's whenever we moved and has never had a problem with their trucks. We used Ryder truck once, but that wasn't a personal move, we moved a business with that truck.

Also, I'm guessing the Motel 6 you tried to stay at was a dump. Motel 6 is no longer a really good place to stay at (hence why they really aren't AAA approved anymore).
Aug. 17th, 2010 11:28 pm (UTC)
Ugh. Good thoughts coming your way.
Aug. 20th, 2010 10:48 am (UTC)
Luxury Properties
budget is very essential . Selecting a good property agent is most important for property management who helps you throughout the buying process and beyond to completion.

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The Old Wolf

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