Wednesday, December 19, 2007

American service

I'm sitting at Melbourne airport remembering old days in San Francisco. I was Chief Financial Officer of an animated graphics company in Silicon Valley and used to drive down there everyday in my soft top ancient Alfa Spider which was "stick shift" and rather alarming to do hill starts on the 90 degree hills in SF. Anyway, I was driving to the office at about this time of year, looking forward to a Board meeting at 11am followed by the office Christmas lunch, going at my usual speed, around 90mph, in the third lane of the four lane motorway, the fourth being the fastest lane, when suddenly one of my tyres blew and I swerved into the fast lane, where fortunately nothing was coming, and had to pull over in the hard shoulder in the middle of the motorway. Vehicles were passing me at a rapid rate and my whole car juddered as each one went by. I called the office, explained my predicament and was advised to call the emergency number 911 which I did and within 15 minutes a police car drew up, a man emerged and said this, "I am going to drive on and take the next exit from this freeway. Then I'll turn back and get on at the previous entrance. When you see that all the traffic has been stopped, I want you to drive across to the hard shoulder next to the slow lane." That's the only time in my life that I've stopped the traffic. I was very impressed as they have a free roadside assistance service in California and half an hour later a man came to change my tyre (which was somewhat worrying as he was virtually kneeling in the slow lane just round a bend) and refused to accept a tip. That's what I call service!


Blogger Eurodog said...

Hard to believe the efficiency and the kindness of those who helped on a stretch of highway we must have all seen in the movies.

5:40 pm  
Anonymous dogbreath said...

Well you wouldnt get that with AA in the UK-nor indeed in Germany.A friend of minewas retrurning from putting both her parents in a Home when she broke down. ADAC ,the German Strassenwacht arrived,chatted -then called the Polizei to breathtest her...she had only drunk a small glass of port and was declared safe to drive on...... quis custodiet! I ask myself

8:48 am  
Blogger kinglear said...

WW - I'm sure u have stopped the traffic more than once....

7:27 pm  
Blogger Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Great service indeed! Buon Natale, WW!

1:00 am  
Blogger Ellee Seymour said...

I hope you reached home safely for Christmas, many best wishes for the festive season.

11:33 am  
Blogger Mopsa said...

All best wishes for 2008.

10:04 am  

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