I was on my way back home yesterday when all the sudden the car battery died. Mum and I were stranded in the middle of the North-South highway, 98.6km near Lanchang exit. We kinda panicked for a moment before we settled down with the plan of hitching a bus back to KL. The problem was the place was pitch-black and we have no idea what time the buses that were passing by. We called the PLUS highway emergency number and waited almost an hour before a patrol car came to rescue. He made a report of incident and placed some safety cones at the side of the road. The PLUS patrol guard told us that we could tow the car to Termerloh station which was exactly 32km from where we were. So there goes our plan to hitch a ride back to KL. After signing some documents, the patrol truck left us alone with a promise that a tow truck would come in half an hour’s time. So they we were sitting in our broken car, waiting...
The tow truck came an hour later. An elderly man hopped out from the vehicle and asked us about the car. To our demise, he who told us that they could only tow the car until the nearest toll, that happened to be Lanchang which by the way, was one of the terms in the document. That was the opposite of what we were told earlier. He argued further that he could not do so because the company would accuse him of corruption if he were to breach the contract. After having a heated argument with the man, he finally relented because it was totally not our fault...
Off we went to the Termeloh exit, in the towed car. I must say it was one heck of an experience. It happened to rain heavily at that time and the windows were winded down. By the time we arrived at the Termeloh toll, we were drenched. The tow truck left us there at the side of the road and gave us a number. He told us that there was a workshop was just 2 km away from the toll, where there will be a mechanic who could help us to fix the car. That was all he could do to help... So, option of catching a bus back home to Kuantan was out of the question.
After discussing for almost an hour or two, mum and I decided to take the risk and jumpstart the car to find the nearest hotel available in Termeloh town. After a couple of push, the car was alive and we sped off. This time, we had no headlights and air-con on. We were lucky to reach the Green Park hotel just in time before the battery died again.
We checked in at the reception at 2 in the morning with only the clothes on our back. The price was pretty cheap, RM 68 for a double bed room. The receptionist was very nice; he assured us that we could settle the problem by 10am the next morning as we happened to be at the right location where car services shops were abundant. We took dinner at 3am at a nearby stall. I guess when you are tired and hungry, super salty and spicy fried noodles and ant-flavour cocoa drink tasted heavenly...
It was our life saver...
This morning we went to the car service shop to fix the car. To our surprise, it only cost us RM 25! Apparently the alternator was still intact but the fan belt had eroded due to old age.
Quickly I did a mental calculation on the money that we might have wasted if we were to take the first option.
RM 60 to tow the car for the toll to the night mechanic shop
RM 30 for taxi trip to the nearest hotel
RM 68 for accommodation
RM 200 for repair (We would probably got cheated by the mechanic..)
After the whole ruckus, we only spent exactly RM93!
Thought I have wasted a whole night stranded in the middle of nowhere, it was a great experience for me.
I learned a valuable lesson yesterday.
Never ever laugh at people where their car broke down at the side of the road.
Who knows, you might be in the same situation yourself...