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FLAT TIRE IN FLORIDA

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TRAVELS by KRISS on 05 december 2015

Thursday was our second morning in not so sunny Sarasota FL.
We had promised the children we would take them to see Winter and Hope the dolphin heroes from the movies in Clearwater FL and I know they were looking forward to it, we did too !

So why not take advantage of the cloudy weather for some indoor activities.
Great !

After hitting the road on the Highway 75, with a heavy traffic, we suddenly noticed a noise but then the texture of the road had changed and since it wasn’t the first time the car did a similar noise, we didn’t immediately realize what was happening.
Fortunately I had a weird feeling about it and I went back to the right lane and parked as soon as I could.

As soon as I got out, I checked the provenance of the toxic burning smoke that was filling up the air and no mistake one of the tire was dead flat and smoking hot.
I quickly rushed everyone out, as far as possible from the busy highway and evaluated the situation.

- We had not been driven long on the flat tire but at 70mph I doubted there was anything that very tire could do next.
- It wasn’t raining yet.
- We had parked close to a large meadow and were far enough from the road.
- We had no cell phone (haven’t had time to buy a burner phone yet).
- The barbwire fence separating us from a nearby community was low enough form me to climb.

Without further thinking I climbed and reached the first house in the nearby area and asked for a phone.
I was immediately helped out with great kindness and called Hertz emergencies services.
What was my surprise when after explaining our misadventure and rather uncomfortable position for a family with children, to hear the options given by the operator on the phone.
The told me I had one of the 3 following options :

- Fixing the tire myself and going to the nearest Hertz to replace the car (free). - Get the insurance from my Visa card to tow the car out of the way. - Get their insurance to tow the car out of the way which would cost me $700 and bananas.

I went bananas !

I rushed back to my family, explained the situation and before I had time to go check if there was a replacement tire in the trunk, 2 men had already stopped.
David, to whom I told I was sorted and would have to fix the car and Michael who didn’t want to hear anything and climbed the fence himself after having parked his car to help us out !

Later on David made the way back from the highway to bring us a pack of water ! He checked with me if there was a tire in the trunk.
There was none but a little repair kit which would clearly not be sufficient on such a damaged tire.
I was amazed by the kindness and helpfulness of the man.

But I was in for an even bigger surprise with Michael who took matter into his own hands after infuriatingly listening to our story.
He was so upset for us, probably more than we were actually that he helped us call back Hertz services and managed to get us out of this tricky situation.
Not only did he get the car towed for free (which was the least the company could do to be honest) but he waited with us for nearly 2 hours for the tow truck to show, postponing all his plans.

Then as the tow truck could only take one of us in his car, he drove the rest of the family to Sarasota airport where our car was to be changed free of charge.

I jumped in the truck with Jason, a native of the area who gave me plenty of tips on the area, where to see manatees, dolphins, sharks, alligators…

At the airport we parted ways with Michael, who had missed his lunch and half his day to help us out.
We took his phone and we’ll give him a call at some point during our stay ! The man left obviously touched and emotional.
We were very touched ourselves and happy to have encountered such kindness on our way !

I may not agree with the American way of life (but I think many americans disagree as well) I may be sarcastic at times but I like to believe in a kind way.
However I will not doubt the good heart of humans wherever you are on the planet.
In this very spot, though, no fewer than 4 people (another man stopped on the highway to ask if we needed some help) kindly offered a hand and I am extremely grateful !

In a word : Thank you !

FLAT TIRE IN FLORIDA

FLAT TIRE IN FLORIDA

FLAT TIRE IN FLORIDA

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