roadside angel

Last week, whilst I was preparing my tax return, I came across my annual reminder from the AA Road Service to renew my membership.

The thought went through my mind how I had not had to call the AA (Automobile Association, not Alcoholics Anonymous!) for a few years now. My faithful car has repaid regular servicing and tender handling with a problem free tenure.

The very next day, the car would not start, and I had to call the AA to get it fixed. Turns out I needed a new battery – even my faithful car needs a treat every now and then. So it now has a spanking new battery and last night it beamed brighter than ever before. It was as if it needed cheering up, what with the frosty weather and cold mornings making it cranky.

However, it is almost as if I created the breakdown by even thinking about how I had not called the AA in recent years. Maybe I should just bin the AA paperwork. And never think about calling them out again. I will now just visualise a very reliable and good tempered car.

This episode reminded me of how I first joined the AA many years ago. When I worked for a Bank, I was going around the country visiting their branches and installing telecommuncations equipment. Whilst waiting at one of their branches, something made me visit the AA shop next door. For some reason, I was drawn to apply for membership and I took out membership with a road rescue service.

That was on a Tuesday morning and the following Sunday night, I broke down whilst driving north from London. Just like in the movies, it was a cold, dark and damp night and I had broken down on a quite road.

Some of my family members were with me in the car, including my nephew, who was only 3 months old at the time. From the noise made by the car, it was clear that it was a serious problem. This was the days before mobile phones and eventually someone stopped after my frantic and increasingly desperate hand waving.

An extremely kind man stopped – not only did he drive me to his home to use his phone, he made me some tea and also drove me back. This was one of the kindest things anyone has ever done for me. My 3 month old nephew simply slept through the whole thing.

The AA eventually arrived and towed my car to my parents place. The damaged engine was repaired a week later and it was as good as new. But without my AA membership, that night could have been a long one for all of us, and I would have probably paid a small fortune to be eventually towed home by an independent garage.

All thanks to my inner voice prompting me to take out AA membership a few days earlier.

So next time, you get an inner urge to do something, do give it due attention. And if you are not a member of a road support service, then the AA is as good as anyone else.

Listen to that inner voice – and the more you do, the better it will get.

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