Sacked by the "downturn", an unemployed architect touring the country in a bus...



I used to live in New York City. I designed homes for the tycoons of Wall Street; Park Avenue, Scarsdale, Greenwich. It was great fun. And, after years of saving up for a down payment, I was just about to buy my own little place in Fleetwood, half an hour north of the city, when the economy fell apart. Architects are like canaries in a coal mine when the economy slows, and true to form, there were massive layoffs in firms all over the country. Devastation of the profession. So, I decided to try to find something else to do for a while. I bought a 23' school bus and I'm on the road to see if I can figure out what that might be.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Ford Tough

I'm at the third Ford dealership/service department I've been to since Friday, this one in Orange Texas.  My coolant leak has been fixed; burst hose replaced, some $20 in parts plus two hours labor.  As for the erratic transmission behavior, this service department pretty much repeated the diagnostic steps completed Saturday at the first and second Ford places, but in greater depth and reaching a slightly different conclusion.  Yes the PCM was fried, but the reason it was, was due to a short in the wire harness feeding it.  The short was missed by the first service department, and had the PCM just been replaced, it would have re-fried.  Now, the short has been fixed; one and a half hours labor.  They are about to order the new PCM ($512, plus shipping), which most likely will be via overnight from one of two dealers (either Utah, or California), or 7-10 business days directly from Ford (ughh...)  So far I spent Friday night parked in front of the Ford place in Jennings, Louisiana, waiting for them to open Saturday to look at my transmission, then Saturday morning at the Ford in Crowley, and Saturday night in the Welcome to Texas info center, with the coolant problem, Sunday and Sunday night in front of the Ford place in Orange, Texas, waiting for them to open Monday to fix both problems, all Monday while they fixed the hose and diagnosed the PCM, and now at least today and tonight while they get the part.

UPDATE:  The PCM will be here tomorrow, via UPS overnight.  Today, someone at Ford backed my bus into something (see light circle highlights in photo), denting the rear arched top. :-O  They will have a body shop estimate in the morning, and presumably offer a deduction off my bill.

I can't wait to be out-a-here!

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