This morning, I had to get up and out for a training meeting at my second job. It was supposed to last an hour. It lasted two. Of course it did. Mr. Everything and the Goose dropped me off there. After an hour and fifteen minutes, they ended up coming in and using the company’s break room table to play cards. It was a Scrabble card game. (That can count as spelling for today, right?) When the two hour training was over, we ended up standing at the front of the office chatting with my manager. Mr. Everything is good at everything, including talking. Trust me on that one. The man can talk. Meanwhile, the Goose entertained herself by walking in a figure ‘8’ around the Mr. and me. (Come to think of it, can that count as math?) I finally had to tell her to stop because I did not have my Dramamine this morning. Later, I wished I had, because I could have worked while riding in the car.
Next, we rushed to the bank to withdraw money to buy a used Suburban that we have been considering for a while. We had arranged that we would call the owner of the car and he would meet us at the empty lot where the car was sitting. We grabbed lunch in the drive-thru and headed that way. We were two hours behind where we had hoped to be, but all was still okay with the world. We could make it.
We got to the location to meet the guy to buy the Suburban, and he was not there. For some reason, that did not surprise me. It always seems that on the rushing days, things never work as planned. I’m pretty sure it’s a conspiracy against me.
After waiting fifteen minutes, the man showed up, and we bought the car. That included the part where he counted out the money in plain sight while we were standing on the side of a road in an empty lot in the ‘hood. The Goose and I acted as security. She’s a black belt, and I’ve watched a lot of Tae Kwon Do. Apparently, the nice gentlemen who walked by us could see that we had mad ninja skills, because they did not mess with us. Bless their heart;, they could not even afford belts or pants that fit, so I would have thought they might try to take the money. I was wrong. They kept walking, thank goodness.
As Mr. Everything was chatting with the car guy, I nicely reminded him that I had a meeting for my first job in 5 minutes. I hope the car guy took my expression as a smile instead of what I was really feeling at that point. However he took it, he wrapped up the conversation quickly, and we were on our way. At this point, we were driving two cars, and since the Beetle was home sick, I had to be the driver of the truck. (One benefit of having a 15 year old is that you have a built-in chauffeur anytime you need one.)
The beauty of working from home is that I can work from anywhere. My motto is, “Have laptop, will travel.” Before we left the side of the road in the ‘hood, I turned on my laptop and dialed into work, and I was good to go. Mr. Everything needed to stop at a house that he was working on in the same neighborhood, so I went with him. My meeting was supposed to last an hour, so the plan was for me to sit in the house and attend my meeting. Before we could get to the house, the meeting was starting, so, as I was driving, I had a cell phone on speakerphone and my laptop on the passenger’s seat. I was following the Mr. and had no idea where he was leading me. All I knew was that I was NOT going to lose him as he made various turns on narrow streets, so I stayed on the bumper of my new Suburban like glue.
When we got to the house, I stayed in the truck for my meeting, until my laptop’s battery died with no warning. I rushed in, carrying my laptop with my cell phone hooked to it for internet and the Mr.’s cell phone with the call playing on speaker. It was a good thing I was on ‘mute’ during the call. I’m pretty sure I would have caused a disruption.
While I sat in a back bedroom and listened, Mr. Everything worked in a front room. The Goose decided it smelled too badly in the house, so she went to play in the new Suburban. The Mr. had warned her not to have the radio playing because the battery on the Suburban did not sound like it was very strong. (You know where this story is going, right?)
My one hour phone call ended an hour and fifteen minutes later. (Again, I’m pretty sure it’s a conspiracy.) My next mission was to go to the DMV to get the new car tagged. I was oh-so-excited about that, as I’m sure you can imagine. I gathered the paperwork from Mr. E and made sure the Goose was in the car. I got in the Suburban and turned the key. Click, click. *Sigh.* The Mr. hooked jumper cables up to our truck and to the Suburban and told me to turn the key. Click. After twenty minutes of charging, turning and clicking, Mr. Everything decided he needed to go get a new battery. I decided to stay at the house so I could at least get some work done.
His simple trip to Wal-Mart turned into a 1 ½ hour trip. By the time he got back and changed the battery, it was 4:30. It was Friday afternoon, and I was on the wrong side of downtown. The trip to the DMV would have to wait, and for that, I was thankful. Since I had followed Mr. E on various roads in the ‘hood while paying attention to my meeting instead of to where I was going, I had no idea where I was or how to get home. I found myself in a vehicle I had never driven, in a neighborhood I didn’t know, in rush hour traffic and with large numbers painted across the front windshield. Needless to say, I was a little stressed out. I warned the Goose that she should not talk to me or she would surely die. Luckily, she was thrilled to sit in the very back seat of the new Suburban so I never heard from her.
As I drove home, there was a car in front of me driving painfully slow. The man had a panda bear in his back window that taunted me for the full length of my trip. The panda and I quickly developed a hate-hate relationship, and I was pretty sure I was going to have to ram the car out of my way just so that stupid bear would quit looking at me. The bear was probably looking at the large numbers written across the windshield of my Suburban.
Meanwhile, every time I hit the brakes, the Suburban would bounce like something was wrong. I called Mr. Everything, and he assured me that it was okay. He said he knew the brakes needed to be replaced and that he would take care of it. He, being Everything, would be able to fix it, I knew, so I did not worry.
I discovered on the trip home that the gas needle had stopped working. It was just floating around oblivious to the fact that it was supposed to serve a purpose. Since I stopped and put $100 of gas in the new car, I knew I had at least enough gas to make it home. (Let’s hope….)
The Goose and I ran home, changed clothes, grabbed a sandwich for dinner, patted the Beetle on the head and ran back out. We had a play to go to. It was a local production of the longest play in the history of the world. The acting was fine, but the combination of uncomfortable seats and a really hectic and long day made it a difficult story to watch.
Finally, at 11:15 PM, we headed home. The bouncing brakes continued. The gas gauge continued to float around aimlessly. As I drove down the final leg of my trip, the new addition of the gentle orange glow of the “Service Engine Soon” light helped to guide me home. Yep, it was just another day in my life. -Al