indexJust as I was filing the insurance claim for the minivan (Ghost George) in which we were rear-ended last weekend on our way to our ill-fated vacation, my husband called to say he had heard from the mechanic that our other car–my trusty 12-year-old Honda Civic (Ella)–needs a new timing belt and brake pads.

As it happened, I had the minivan into the mechanic just a few weeks ago because of a leaky tire, when they discovered my tires were all cracked and not good. Hey! Four new tires! Why not? While they were installing the tires, they discovered I needed new brake pads. The car would not pass state inspection without new brake pads, they said. Sure, install new brake pads. Why not?

Then we were rear-ended but managed NOT to hit the car in front of us, potentially saving ourselves and others from serious injury and expense. Could it have been because of the new tires and brake pads? Who knows? But let’s say it was.

So Ella needs a new timing belt and brake pads, and I am happy to give them to her, because we like to be safe. And Ella’s never had a new timing belt. That’s what credit cards are for, right? So we can be safe. I love new brake pads.