Kevin Standlee (kevin_standlee) wrote,

Dash to Sparks

One of the tires on Lisa's Big Orange Van got a hole in the sidewall a few weeks ago. The local service place put a patch on it, although they warned Lisa that they really weren't supposed to do that and that the tire should be replaced post haste. Being Big O tires, she thought this might be covered under warranty, as the tires had nearly all their tread on them. (Because of various reasons I've discussed here over the years, the Big Orange Van spent years sitting in Mehama not running at all.) We checked with Big O and they were able to get one tire — they didn't have it in stock — and we headed in to Sparks this afternoon as soon as I could free myself up from work. (I was at work at 6:30 AM today, so I could leave early.)

It turns out that Big O's road-hazard warranty on those tires only lasts three years now, and the tires, although they had less than 10K miles on them, were about six years old. Thus we had to buy a replacement tire, which is not trivial: nearly $270 for one tire. Fortunately, as I said, the other three tires are in nearly-new condition, so it's safe to change just one tire.

Since we were in Sparks anyway, we took care of our shopping to Winco, and then decided to go to John Ascuaga's Nugget for dinner. Lisa had an unfortunate incident with the steam table in the Buffet: the metal tongs had gotten heated up so much that they burnt her hand, raising small welts on two fingers. The staff were very apologetic and brought her an ice bag while Security came and took an accident report. After ten or fifteen minutes, the pain was back to more or less normal and we were able to eat.

Of all of the Nugget's restaurants, the Buffet is the only one that really doesn't excel. It's not the worst buffet in Reno, but it's by no means the best, either. But we keep coming back, like many of the things at the Nugget, because of their staff, who are excellent.

After dinner, we played a little bit of slots, and while there was one point where it looks like the odds were going to catch up with Lisa, in the end she ended up about $4 ahead before quitting for the night. Maybe she had a hot hand after all.

As we had left Winco, a little light snow had started to fall, but it didn't seem like much. But it had gotten heavier and started to accumulate a bit when we left the Nugget. I was glad we were traveling in the Big Orange Van, with its full-time 4WD and those huge mud & snow tires. There wasn't a whole lot of snow on the road, but Lisa didn't like the feel and kept her speed down. Everyone else was passing us, including big rigs. I don't like triples to start with, but they really shouldn't be driving at all in these conditions, but they were.

East of Lockwood, flashing lights announced Chains Required Beyond This Point. That's okay: Lisa's van doesn't need chains. (Good thing, too, as there isn't sufficient clearance in the wheel wells for them.) Had I been driving my van and chained up, I would have been most annoyed when only about a mile or two later the pavement was dry, but there was nowhere to pull off and remove the chains.

By the time we got back to Fernley at 10 PM, the snow had slacked off and there was essentially nothing accumulated at home. I rebuilt the fire in the fireplace, impressed with how well it had held the heat even though we'd been gone since about 3 PM. Although there was nothing but a few hot coals, the thermometer read in excess of 1000° F.

We had some plans to do errands tomorrow, but if this snow gets any heavier, we'll put them off. But now we have an all-weather vehicle for going out in the snow if necessary.
Tags: fernley, food, lisa, reno, sparks, van, weather
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