Observations and Oddities

My Series of Unfortunate Events

I don’t generally use my blog as a place to chronicle the events of my day, but today is one of those days that you just have to document for posterity’s sake.

Before I begin, a brief disclosure: I am fully aware that there are plenty of people in world who are having days much worse than mine and do not intend this as a feel-sorry-for-me story. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. My day got such a bad start today that it was simply comical and I thought I might bring a smile or two to those of you that read my randomness. So, here it goes- a series of unfortunate events.

Chapter 1: The Parking Garage
I’ve successfully made it to the parking garage down the street from my office- on time, in a cute outfit and having a good hair day. I have the world on a string! Then, next thing I know, I’m on my way up the ramp of the 8th floor of the garage and my car loses all engine power. I hit the breaks to keep from rolling backward and the people behind me look at me like I’m nuts for just stopping. Honking commences (it’s 8:30 a.m. in downtown Cincinnati, the garage is a little busy). I get out of the car and ask three people to back up, so I can let my car roll backward into a corner so they can pass. I then stand there looking distressed and placing SOS calls from my cell phone as my co-workers and other corporate downtowners drive by and gawk. Garage staff comes to help, thinking they can just jump the battery- garage traffic blocked again. I know it is not the battery, but they insist on trying for nearly 30 minutes.

Finally, I convince them I will need to be towed and we call for a truck that can clear the low ceilings of the garage. They say it will be a lot easier to tow me out if we can get the car down to the bottom of the garage, so two garage employees and a really nice guy who had just pulled into the garage, push my car up the ramp so I can turn to the down side and coast to the lowest level of the garage. I cannot express how much fun it was making all of the tight turns around the corners of the garage with my power steering not working, but I somehow made it safely to the ground floor.

Chapter 2: Back to From Where I Came
The tow truck arrives and picks me up without incident. I ask the driver to take me and my dead car to my neighborhood mechanic rather than trusting a random downtown garage (I live about 25 miles away from work). When I get there I realize I cannot find my keys. I think maybe they are still in the car, but they are not. I empty my purse and computer bag onto the hood of my car- they are not there. I search the cab of the tow truck- still not there. They are also nowhere to be found in mechanic’s parking lot. I check my coat pockets and find that the pocket I most likely would have put them is has a hole in it. Guessing my keys are on the floor of the parking garage downtown. I let the mechanic know that I will have to have my husband bring a key later, because apparently I am an idiot. My tow truck guy says he has to head back downtown anyway, and that he will check with the garage for my keys and call me if he finds them (nice guy).

Chapter 3: In Search of a Rental Car
The concierge guy from the garage drives me to the Enterprise location in my small town- they have no cars. In fact, not a single Enterprise location on the east side of Cincinnati (including the BIG one at Kings Auto Mall, that keeps an inventory of 300 cars) has a car. They say maybe by Friday. The driver takes me to a local place that the garage works with regularly and they also have no cars. Apparently all of the rain and last week’s black ice have left all of the car rental places empty and the body shops full. I decide God is trying to tell me to go home and I choose to listen.

Chapter 4: My Situation Wreaks Havoc for Others
The shop we took the car to is literally right down the street from my house, so as the driver brings me home, we see that there is a major car accident right in front of the shop. We turn onto my street and stare for a minute- trying to establish how such a bad accident happened in that location. The driver then notices that my tow truck is back at the shop- he guesses that maybe the tow driver found my keys in his truck after all and has brought them back for me (maybe this day is getting better?).The driver calls back to the shop to ask and finds out, that no, my keys have not been found, but that my tow truck driver was involved in the accident that we were just observing. Apparently he is the one who hit the badly damaged car lying in the ditch- an incident that occurred only because of my situation.

Chapter 5: Working from Home
Finally settled at home (thank goodness for that keypad on the garage door) and I sit down to log-in to the office VPN- thankful I have my work stuff with me from finishing up some writing last night at home. Up pop the VPN errors- I’m unable to log in. I spend the next 30 minutes on the phone troubleshooting with the help desk (although kudos to my tech guy for being super helpful) to realize that something is just randomly screwed up with my VPN client and that we have to install another one to get me reconnected. It’s a glitch, no explanation for why it happened, but it did.

It’s at this point in the day when I realize it is probably good that I am now back in the safety of my home where I can remain safely contained and no longer be a danger to those around me (or those who are around my tow truck driver). It’s also at this point when I am finally able to look back at the course of my morning (its only Noon) , have a hearty laugh and realize that this is a story I just have to share.


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