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George depends on his car. He uses it for work as a travelling salesman and relies on it for his living. He has a family, and two sets of waging parents who need on regular visits by George and his wife, Mary, for support and social contact. Without his car George would be well and truly stuck, and others would suffer too.

Oddly, since it is so important to him, he neglects the car. He feeds it petrol, and that’s about it. ‘Maintenance’ is not a concept George gives much thought to, so when the car started to overheat he was bothered, mystified, and a little bit frightened because of the implications.

He went to a garage and told the mechanic, “My car is overheating”. The other man replied “Overheating?”. George said “Yes”, the other said, “Hmmm”.

George went to another garage. “My car is overheating”, he said. This new mechanic was more encouraging, “Leave it with us, we’ll look into it.” Reassured, George handed over the keys. “Come back tomorrow”, the second mechanic said.

George did as he was told. The garage man presented him with a list of possible faults, and a big estimate. “The trouble is”, they said, “the engine is overheating”. “I know that”, said George, “I need it to be fixed because I rely on my car for so many things.”
“Well”, said the garage man, “first we need to know what’s causing the problem, so we can fix it”.

George said, “When I left my car with you yesterday, I hoped you’d find the problem and fix it, but all you’ve done is speculate on what’s causing the problem.

To be continued…

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