*graaaaaa* I had to take 2 hours off work in the middle of the day to deal with stupid parking companies.
My Dad called me at work saying that I got a letter from _a_collection_agency_. The fact that it went to my parents' house made me think that I forgot to change my address for one of my bills. I still get mail occasionally at my parents' house, mostly junk mail. But I couldn't think of what it could be and I got miffed that they didn't invoice me first.
So, I left work immediately and went over to pick up this letter. When I opened it, it said that U Park Enterprises had filed a claim against me for a delinquent violation charge, that I was offered a service on good faith and I didn't honour the agreement, blah blah blah... one of those "Without Prejudice" letters.
U Park had my car wrongfully towed on March 21, 2000 (last frickin' YEAR). I had parked in one of their lots on a morning when their pay machine was broken and there was only one. It ate someone elses' money, so I wasn't going to try it either. I put a note on my dash with my cell number and went to my meeting. When I came out, my car was gone.
I called U Park and told them what happened. They apologized up and down for it. The ticket machine got fixed shortly after I went into my meeting, but I should only have gotten a ticket if anything. The patrol person didn't follow proper procedure. A U Park manager drove out to where I was, picked me up and drove me to the tow lot to get my car. He was very apologetic, got all the paperwork and stuff cleared up. He even stayed with me until I was sure my car wasn't scratched or damaged or anything. I was _very_ thankful because you wouldn't _believe_ the tow lot environment... all I can say is, I'm infinitely glad they weren't _drunk_ as well.
Anyway, I thought it was over and done with. I kept the U Park manager's business card for quite a while after (like 6 months or something). Eventually, when I was clearing stuff out, I tossed it in the recycling.
Well, it turns out that U Park has since merged with Imperial Parking. Apparently, my incident hadn't quite been closed or it was left in a "semi-resolved" state. When the companies merged, it got bumped into an "outstanding" state again. So, after a while, it went to a collection agency. I had to be on hold with the collection agency, explain the situation there, get the Imperial Parking violation number, call Imperial Parking, sit there on hold, explain the situation there again, explain why I don't have any documentation - no business card from the U Park manager whose name I don't even remember now, no papers - nothing to support my version of what happened.
But the Imperial Parking guy, Andrew, believed me - probably because the record looked slightly different than a real unpaid violation. He said my violation was cancelled and they'd be contacting the collection agency on my behalf.
What a waste of 2 hours. =P