Do you have a special person in your life that is there to protect you?
Simon, my father-in-law, was that special person for me. Here is a story where he tried to help.
When I was twenty, my then boyfriend owned a red 1978 Triumph TR7 sports car with black stripes. It was a beautiful car, characterized by its “wedge” shape. At the time, it was advertised as “the shape of things to come”. In fact, it was the car that attracted me to the man who drove it, enticing me to get to know him better. Eventually, there were the rides from work after midnight shift at the hospital. Before I knew it we were dating and then living together.
As full time students our budget was limited to rent, tuition and the basics. To free up some cash, we decided to sell the TR7 and use my old car as our vehicle. That way we rid ourselves of the $3500 car loan associated with the car which at the time represented lot of money for us. Simon offered to help. He connected us to a person he knew who was interested in sports cars. All that my boyfriend and I knew about this person was where he lived and that he was a pilot. Simon suggested that we meet the potential buyer and offer our car to him for a couple of days so that he could test drive it. In the meantime, Simon would keep an eye on him. At first we weren’t keen on the idea of giving our car and its ownership to a stranger, but we convinced ourselves that we were just being overly cautious and after meeting him at his apartment we handed him the keys. I can still remember having a funny feeling as we left the car behind. I should have trusted my gut instinct.
A few days passed and we did not hear from the pilot. Simon decided to visit him. There was no answer at the door. After several more attempts at contact, Simon was able to catch him in passing by surprise. The pilot told Simon that he had been traveling for work and that the car was actually being seen by his mechanic at a nearby garage. He indicated that he would be in touch the next day.
We were starting to get very nervous and that sinking feeling that we were never going to see either the pilot or our car ever again. Simon again tried to contact the pilot on our behalf. This time when he arrived at the door, the house was empty. The pilot had vanished, but not before he had sold the car to the garage illegally, we learned a short time later.
We were in Hell. How could this have happened? We had no extra money and we were still making payments on the car that we no longer possessed. We decided to contact our insurance company and explain the whole story to them. They said that they would launch an investigation and get back to us.
Several weeks passed and our life was continuing along as usual-school, work, and bills. Then we received the letter in the mail.
Not only did our insurance company decline our claim. They made allegations that we were part of the car theft plot. As a result, they did not pay us any monies for the TR7 and advised us that we could no longer be their customer. We were shocked. We were honest, albeit naive in retrospect, and we had been swindled.
Have you ever felt victimized and unfairly treated after doing nothing wrong? What a horrible feeling.
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Story by Joanne
Edited by Karen C.