Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Yes, this just happened to me

What you are about to read, internet, is what I would call a "bad day". Now, I am aware that people have bad days all the time, but me: I do not. I try to find the good in every day, and I constantly work on patience and awareness. Sometimes, though, it's just got to be statistics that say every day cannot be good. I guess I was long overdue, and this is what ensued. This story, in no way, is a dramatization of what actually occurred. It is a play by play of something I can't even call a bad day, because in actuality, this is one hour and 15 minutes of my life today.

It started when I walked from work to my car in the parking garage, headed to see my trainer for the first time in 2 weeks! I wanted to cancel, of course, because it is much more fun to be lazy, but I said to myself, "Self: You need this. You will regret not going, and so you will go, and you will love how you feel after. Trust me". This pep talk happened as I walked in the brisk fall air of Seattle. I drove to the gym, found a wonderful spot right outside the gym and the ATM (double score!) and proceeded to turn the car off to get out and buy a parking sticker for the next hour. A tiny thought rushed past as I pulled the key out of the ignition and automatically, without thought as always, placed the keys in my purse. The thought said, "Lock or don't?" I immediately thought "lock" because the street I was on is riddled with homeless people and hoodlums, and my purse was on the front seat. I had my mini wallet in hand, opened the door, locked it with the auto lock on the door handle, stepped out and shut it. I walked halfway to the parking meter when I got that sense of impending doom in my tummy. Immediately I knew what I had just done, but I told myself, "Maybe not. Maybe you didn't hit the lock like you think you did." Just for shits and giggles, I walk back over to the car slowly, as if it was going to explode at any second, and peeked in. ALL. DOORS. LOCKED.

In moments like these, the mind starts going so fast that you can't really think straight. My first idiot move was to check the locked doors. Maybe today, by some act of God, they would open. Even though they were locked. Maybe for some reason. COME ON GOD, JUST MAKE THE LOCKS BROKEN! Jeez, srsly, is this really happening? Last time this happened it was Donia's fault, and it's so much easier when it's someone else's fault, isn't it?

My next stupid thoughts were "I'll call Donia". No phone-it's in the car. "I'll just tell my trainer that I can't work out with her, I'll use a payphone." No phone numbers memorized. "I'll just go home and figure it out there." No keys=no house keys, no landline phone to figure anything out you idiot!!! I, luckily, had my ID, credit cards, and bus pass on me, so I deduce that the one and only thing I can do is walk back downtown to where Donia is working and get her keys. My God, tell me her keys are not in the car in her backpack that she dropped in there before her shift because she knew I'd be picking her up anyway. If I have that, at least, going for me, I'll hug and kiss the next person I see, dirty or not. I promise.

Let me now share with you a little bit about Seattle weather. It is a common misconception that it rains all the time in Seattle. To clear this up, I will tell you that it is gloomy and cloudy and very much overcast for most of the year (we're talkin September through May). Now, when I say we have had the most beautiful summer ever, I mean it, and I have actually heard Seattlites themselves share this opinion with me over the last couple weeks. As fall rolls in, we have all been basking in the last rays of sunshine we can, and shedding a single tear for the weather to come. I bet you can guess where this is all going in my bad hour, and you guessed right. If you love irony, or just love the big ole F you this universe can thrust at you from time to time, you'll enjoy the next part of the story where I SWEAR TO GOD, INTERNET, IT STARTED RAINING TODAY IN SEATTLE. AFTER A BEAUTIFUL, RECORD-SETTING DRY SUMMER. It hasn't rained in I don't know how long, but it sure as shit rained today. The day I locked my keys in my car. And couldn't find a bus route. To take me downtown. The 30-some-odd blocks I needed to go. So I walked...

And I walked and I walked and on my walk I thought of a few things. First was the negative "I hate my life life sucks I want to cry but I won't but I really want to but I can't cuz people will see me and think I'm a crackhead all f'ed up walking down the street in the rain and SO HELP ME GOD IF ONE CRACKHEAD ASKS ME FOR MONEY I WILL SPEW THIS WHOLE PATHETIC STORY ONTO THEM UNTIL THEY ARE CRYING FOR ME AND NOT THEMSELVES ANYMORE". That is where I am at at this point. My next thoughts were good ones because, seeing as I wasn't giving in to the urge to cry, I was going to need to think positive. I had Donia as an out-I knew exactly where to find her and didn't need my phone to do it. I'd worn a hoodie and sneakers today to work because I was that lazy and didn't feel like doing more than putting on a wrinkled tee and covering it in an oversized sweatshirt. Well, at least that was going for me too. And I had my ID and money so if, God forbid, Donia had no keys for me, I had the means to drink until her shift was over. And the means to drink a lot. My last thought was that I wasn't getting to work out, but I sure as hell was getting a nice walk in for the day.

Sidenote: you may be asking yourself why I didn't call AAA. Well, readers, my membership had expired as of last month, and when I saw the $80 necessary to renew it, well now. You know that in true Leah form I procrastinated because WALKING TO THE KITCHEN AND WRITING A CHECK IS REALLY TAXING, and I probably wouldn't really need AAA, right?

Let's see, where are we now, ahhh yes. We are somewhere downtown in Seattle between the car--which, btw, does not have a parking sticker on it because I couldn't open the door to put it in the window and NO WAY IN HELL AM I PAYING FOR PARKING SO THAT SOME ASSHOLE CAN WALK BY AND, JUST FOR FUN, STEAL MY PARKING STICKER THAT'S HANGING ON THE OUTSIDE OF THE WINDOW--and Donia's work. I will not let anyone have the last laugh in this one, besides maybe the meter maid who will surely find my car and give me a ticket. That fact I am just putting out of my mind for the time being. I've got bigger fish to fry.

Walking through Seattle is always a challenge, and at this time of night people out on the streets are ready to party, and when I say people I mean those living on or near these streets who are always wasted/cracked out. They are in rare form as all of the timid 9-5ers wait at the same bus stops they do their drugs at, and it's fun to see them all scared, with their ballet flats and their umbrellas, as some drugged up woman screams, "No one want to lay next to yo scrawny ass anyway, you nuttin but a child molester, motherfucker!" Ahh, lovers quarrels. I guess crackheads need love, too. But you do remember that I am taking NO SHIT on this walk today and I am ready to go, come on hooker, give it all you got! I've never hit a bitch, but I ain't got nothin against starting my fightin history with you. Bring. It.

I make it through the storm (literally, but not literally, more to come on that soon) and finally reach the symphony hall where Donia is catering. Yes, fancy shmancy symphony hall with well dressed people saying intelligent things sipping $15 glasses of Moet. I am in the elevator and I just know I have to exit the elevator and walk past the entrance to the gathering they are having tonight, probably a high priced hou- long appetizer and wine party that cost more than any wedding I've ever attended. Wouldn't you know it, the elevator doors open and there's a lovely group of business men using words far beyond my comprehension, and me in my rain soaked hoodie, ripped jeans and sneaks. I rush into the kitchen ASAP and summon Donia over to get her keys and...drumroll...SHE HAS THE KEYS! Lord, You have not forsaken me, nor will You ever. Amen.

Some of the staff has a laugh over my debaucle, but they still really don't know all the gritty details of the last, at this point, 40 minutes. I get the keys and leave as quickly as I can, so not to embarass my girlfriend or my place of work with my wet-rat appearance any longer. Now I exit the building and, if I thought I was a wet rat before, I ain't seen nothin yet. I get outside to good news and bad news. Good first? Ok, well, my bus, the only one I know will get me to the vicinity of where I am going, is sitting outside the door, but about to leave. I run to the door and just make it. The bad news: It is downpouring. Like DOWNPOURING. Remember that little meteorology lesson I gave before on Seattle weather? Well, I forgot to tell you that it just doesn't ever rain hard here. It's always a sprinkly, drizzly rain. Keeping with the theme of the hour, you guessed correctly that it hasn't downpoured but a half a dozen times in the 2 years I have been here. Make today time #7...

Now, this bus ride is in an unfortunately busy area at an unfortunately busy time, but at least I'm dry. Or drying. The stop I need comes pretty quickly, but it is approximately another 10 blocks from where my car is. Did I mention that it. is. raining? And hard? At this point nothing is breaking me though, I have already come so far, I can see the pot of gold at the end of my rainbow. I know I will soon be home and in a snuggie. I can feel it! I can taste it! I can smell...whoa. Just then I pass by a covered bus stop and I see a woman struggling to light a cig. Then I realize, after that god-awful and unfamiliar smell that, internet, I think I just got my first wiff of crack cocaine. Srsly, I have never been in the actual presence of it before, but that smell was like no smoke I have ever smelled before. I press on because no little contact high is going to stop me now, even if I do feel woozy and sick. I get closer and closer, and yes, I know everyone is looking at me saying , "That poor girl", but more likely saying, "That scrubby girl lives on the street. She should get a job like the rest of us". I guarantee people thought this because it just so happens that where my car was parked and where I was now in my journey is an area of Seattle riddled with homeless teen and twenty something runaways who are always strung out and looking to panhandle or rob you. At this moment I could have been one of them, no one would have known better. Great, now I'm insecure too!

I reach the car and magically, and unbelievably to me, I HAVE NO PARKING TICKET! An hour and fifteen minutes, and no meter maid came by! It is pure luck I tell you, because in this exact spot a month ago I saw a man park, run into a deli, and come out under 3 minutes later to a ticket. I kid you not. I blew God a kiss and threw him a wink. He wasn't all bad today, with his little "let's see what you can handle before you crack" joke that he played on me. The keys, the rain, the lack of busses, the dodging of the crackheads. It was all a test of my patience. Well, A++ if I do say so myself, with extra credit for not bitching someone out or shedding a tear in the process.

I am finally in the car, soaked to the core, but victorious. I actually took camera photos to reiterate just how wet it was out. When I said no dramatizations, I meant it. Worst case scenario EVER!

I am now home and in dry clothes, a snuggie thrown over me for warmth. Yes, I do have to leave the house again later to get Donia, but you know one thing...I AM NOT GETTING OUT OF THAT DAMN CAR FOR ANY REASON. Keys in the ignition until I am good and ready to run back into the apt and back into the snuggie for the night. I'm not taking any more chances with this day.

Please excuse my language when I say fuck you, Tuesday, and all of your dirty wet tricks.

** I now invite the aforementioned "one-uppers" to top that, biotch!**