Yesterday, I finally found time to have my Sportage serviced for its 40,000 km mileage. It was actually long overdue as my mileage is already at 41,635 km, but due to busy schedule (which further aggravates the kilometer reading) I was able to do it only yesterday.
I used to have my car serviced at Auto Mall on Thursday but for reasons I can not understand (or perhaps reason I can not accept) KIA decided to close shop on Thursdays (and Fridays) which is a weekend in Saudi Arabia. Previously I have to be at the shop as early as 7:00AM in order to beat the cut-off (they accept only certain number of cars for maintenance), yet a weekend is a more convenient timing for me, instead of having it on a workweek.
I was at the shop as early as 7:30AM but the shop opens at 8:00 AM. I was the second customer though there are cars already inside (maintenance service were unfinished from the previous day).
At the service desk, when I mentioned that my odometer reading is 40,000, I was advised that the required maintenance is extensive and I have to leave the car and get it back on Saturday (it was a Wednesday; the shop is closed on Thursday and Friday). I explained that it is not possible as I am from Thuwal, 100 km from the service center. The staff is kind enough to talk to the maintenance technician to have my car serviced first to which the latter agreed. I was advised by the staff that the servicing will be completed at around 4:00 PM and I should be there to collect my car before 4:30 PM otherwise their shop will be closed, and I can retrieve it only on Saturday. Meantime, when I spoke to the technician, he promised to have the car ready by 2:00 PM.
I then left the service center to pickup our passports at the Philippine Consulate in Jeddah (costs me SR25 for the taxi). After spending about half an hour at the consulate, with still several hours to waste, I decided to leisurely walk (the weather is fine anyway) along Tahlia Street (Prince Mohammed Bin Abdulaziz St.) entering shops that I find interesting — including car showrooms — until I reached Al-Baik restaurant and decided to ‘reward’ myself with a meal. Besides, I just walked two and a half kilometers from the Consulate to Al-Baik (I looked at Google Earth). It was 11:00 AM and the store is about to open. There is already a queue at the still closed door.
After having enjoyed the addictive chicken nuggets, I decided to bail-out and walk some more (it was additional one and a half kilometers according to Google Earth). I stopped and played Angry Birds Star Wars instead, before deciding to hail a cab to bring me back to KIA Service Center at Auto Mall (I was asked SR 25 again by the taxi driver).
I was at the service center at around 2:00 PM, but the servicing is not yet finished. It was around 3:00 PM when the car was handed back to me after settling my bills (discounted at SR 1,339). Thereafter I rushed back to Thuwal to attend pending tasks at my desk.