Finally, my little truck is running good again. My mechanic Thomas did a great job on the engine and the carb, but she needed new plug wires, which I installed myself this morning. Two of them had fallen apart at the plug.

I also found a compression plug missing it's tip and the engine was sucking air. I could put my finger over the hole and feel the suction, then listen to the engine quiet on down. Daniel's home and he helped me fix that.

My truck manual states you should install a new timing belt every 60K miles, to avoid engine damage. She's got 250K and I put a new belt on well over 100K ago, back in Idaho. So I ordered one from the parts store when I picked up the plugs.

My parts guy was quite supportive of this decision, saying if it breaks it would twist the valves, destroying the engine. Besides, he wants to sell me a $60, part. I know the guy and like him, and that's his job.

Then I called Thomas, to tell him the problems have been solved, and to inquire about a timing belt job, dreading how much this would cost. Then my friend made my day. He said the timing belt looked in good shape when he had the engine torn down, if it had any issues he would have told me.

He said cancel that order Jim and get your money back, also tell your parts store friend he's wrong about the valves twisting. This particular engine style would not, it would simply stop.

Then I drove to Napa and canceled my order. Al was very gracious and gave me a credit on my card. I told him Daniel says hi, he did the B&W Auto Parts store lighting a year or so ago, before Napa bought Al and them out.

So this is where small town trust comes in. Most of these people around me were born and raised here. They work and live together, and if you don't maintain your honesty and integrity, you're done.

I trust and respect my mechanic, and friend, Thomas. He's done great work on my old truck, with passion and integrity. I think he's become fond of her, they have bonded.

I told Al at Napa that my mechanic said the valves wouldn't twist, just stop. He said Who's your mechanic? and as Thomas's name left my lips he smiled broadly and said Ahh, the black guy!, I didn't even have to name the shop. Respect is earned and maintained around here.