It was interesting last week, when I went to the Honda dealership to see what could be done. When I mentioned to the guy in the shop that I had a complaint he seemed ready to be defensive, but I am not angry (I LOVE my car, I'm just a little disappointed in the gas milage) and I am certainly not angry with him and I think I managed to charm him, at least a little. At the very least he realized I wasn't intending to make trouble for him and he was very friendly this morning as he checked my car in. He's been at this for twenty years, he told me, I imagine he's a little hard to charm.
My next order of business would be the rental car (O'Neil Honda doesn't shuttle people outside Kansas). I was picked up in a truck. Not a little, light truck, no. A BIG, mistake-a-Yugo-for-a-beer-can truck. I mentioned I had trouble just walking through doors sometimes and preferred to drive small cars and he told me they only had a Dodge Neon in the small catagory. This didn't bother me in the least.
However, it was amusing to be taken out by a second very helpful gentleman to 'pick a car'. He, obviously, hadn't heard my comment about wanting a small car and ask me 'So, you ever driven a truck before?" "no' I replied, with a smile.. "How about a minivan?" "Well, I HAVE driven a minivan before, but I prefer a small car. I drive a Honda Civic.' was my reply, giggling. So, I drove away in the little, red Dodge Neon.
I was warned the check-up might take a while, as the poor mechanic is likely going to have to read the manual as he/she goes along.