What’s dirty greasy intoxicating diesel and petrol got to do with the wedding, you may wonder. Well, absolutely nothing, until my irritating (but adorable) cousin had to announce to the whole wide world what I did today.
So there she was, my cousin Mimi (à la “My cousin Vinny”! Lolz) tagging me on facebook with her comment: “Kima De Mizohican what's the difference between Petrol and Diesel? hyuk hyuk hyuk.. should i tell our mutual frens..hehehehe, or are u gonna blog about it? :-D Lo leng vat rawh!”
Yeah… so a funny thing happened to me today. One of those “unique goof-ups only I am capable of doing” as my friends would say - I filled diesel in my petrol car!!!!
Ok before you judge me or anything, it was like this. My sister, the one who is getting married, had to go shopping and she was in a real hurry.
Remember my old Wagon R I was talking about in my previous post? The one that my brother-in-law and I brought back to life yesterday after nearly 6 months of inactivity, with an empty fuel box and moulds growing all over the seat covers? Yeah, the same car. So since I had to take my sis shopping, I shouted from downstairs, “Mom, do we have petrol?”
You see, my folks, like most Mizo folks who own a car, store at least 5-10 litres of petrol in case of any emergency because the fuel supply in Mizoram stop now and then. Mom was too busy with a couple of aunts finalizing the guest list for the wedding, so she screamed back, “Yessss. It’s in the store room.”
So I went to the store room, saw a huge plastic cylinder and opened it. It definitely smelt like fuel so I poured 5 litres out in a smaller container, took that to the car and refilled it. After that, my car, which had a lot of sweet fond memories, ignited with passion… vroooooommm!
It was then that our servant came running to the garage to tell me that dad was calling me. I went upstairs to meet dad. He asked me one simple question, “Are you sure you filled petrol?”
I said… “yeah, what else could it be?” He replied, “duh, Diesel?”
It was then that I realized our other vehicle Bolero, runs on diesel. Aaargh. I ran downstairs again, called one of my aunt’s driver Chhama, who confirmed that what I filled in the car was not petrol but diesel!!!!!!
So there you have it. I freaking filled diesel in my petrol car.
What do you do if you fill diesel in a petrol car by mistake? Especially if you’ve already started the car? Here’s what I learnt today:
1. Call a mechanic immediately.
2. He will drain your fuel tank. He goes under the car with a couple of wrenches and screwdrivers, opens up the fuel line and then puts a container (bottle, large bucket, anything) under it.
3. He switches on the ignition, stops, repeats. This way, every time the ignition is turned on, fuel is injected, which actually falls to the open bucket lying below.
4. After a few minutes, the entire fuel tank is drained.
5. He gets under the car again, puts every nut and bolt back into place.
6. Now fill the tank with petrol. Real petrol.
7. Start the car. The car is now consuming pure petrol. But don’t forget about the diesel it had consumed earlier.
8. Drive the car to the nearest workshop.
9. There, the mechanics will clean your engine, purify the spark plug and ignition which is already corroded by diesel substances. A “carburetor gas” spray which costs around 200 bucks is used to clean various parts of the engine.
10. Tah dahhh. Your car is now as good as new.
But of course this whole process took me around 5 hours, so I eventually didn’t do any wedding work today. We were supposed to go to all our relatives’ places today to distribute the wedding cards but unfortunately, this blooper changed all our plans.
But tomorrow will be another day. I have learnt the difference between petrol and diesel (comon, give me a break. I was brought up in the Metros, and I’m sure many of my non-Mizo friends won’t be able to tell the difference between diesel and petrol. After all, we never fill the fuel ourselves. We just drive to a fuel stop and tell the attendants to fill petrol or diesel and they do so accordingly.)
And of course if I fill two glasses with petrol and diesel and ask my dear cousin Mimi to tell me which is which, I can bet Opa’s ass that she won’t be able to give me the correct answer.