|"Sunset of Lost Memories" ©Mary Montague Sikes|
There was no place to pull off, so we couldn't stop where the explosion occurred. A short distance down the road, although it was after 5:30 p.m., we were fortunate to discover lights on at Safe and Sound in Barhamsville and four kind men who stopped what they were doing and came out to help us. They found the little temporary tire secured beneath the vehicle and discovered the way to reach it which included dismantling a floor panel. Had we been on our own in the dark without the professional equipment these men used, I don't believe we could have found and changed the tire.
Two of the men even took the time to find the telephone number for me for the William and Mary Barnes and Noble store, so I could call and explain I would be late for the 6 p.m. signing of the Chesapeake Bay Writers Club anthology, Harboring Secrets. Eventually, after learning the Goodyear Tire business near New Town was open until 7 p.m., we limped there only to discover the bent tire rim could not be repaired because it was made of aluminum instead of stainless steel. In purchasing a new car, who would think to ask about the material used in the tire rims? Not I.
Eventually, we got to the book signing at a little after 7 p.m.. Since I was working a shift with Pamela Kinney, author of the Haunted Virginia books, my tardiness was covered. I got to sign one book that Pamela purchased, and I discovered that the Barnes and Noble store had about 10 copies each of five of my titles on display in the "Local Authors" section of the store.
We now have a car in our garage with a temporary tire awaiting the order of a new rim and a new tire to replace the destroyed one. More importantly, we have special memories of the Christmas Miracle for which we are extremely grateful to the people at Safe and Sound. Thank you!