Long day’s journey into Everett

I’m seriously rethinking my strategy about getting car service done at the original dealer. That strategy put me quite a few miles out of my way today.

When it was time to have some recall work done on my Passat (rerouting a cable behind the rear wheel well, swapping out the ignition coil), I figured who better than the place that sold me the car. Complication #1: the dealer is in Everett, which is about 15 miles to the north of us as the crow flies. Of course, the crow doesn’t have to negotiate rush hour traffic through the I-405/I-5 crossover. While I got to the dealer in plenty of time, by the time I got my loaner car (well, loaner rental from the Enterprise shop at the back of the lot. Actually, loaner rental Chevy pick-up truck. This is important; bear with me) and got back on the road, it took me over an hour to get to the office.

Complication #2: Parking. Specifically, parking the big Chevy pick-up in the tiny spaces allotted at Microsoft. Every single outdoor space within walking distance of my building was taken, so after ten fruitless minutes I had to drive down to a newer parking garage (which unlike the older ones actually had the 7′ clearance the pickup demanded) and catch a shuttle bus back to my office. Between the commute and the parking, I missed my first meeting of the morning and was late for almost everything else, and in a foul mood too.

Complication #3: Getting back to Everett in the evening to reclaim my car—then turning around and driving into Seattle for an MIT Sloan recruiting event. Fortunately, this one took only 45 minutes, so I was just a few minutes late.

Suffice it to say, I’ll take recommendations for good dealer service departments closer in.