Yesterday I blogged about the day–coming very soon–when I would no longer need a car. Having spent most of the Memorial Day weekend under the hood of an old Jeep Wrangler we were trying to sell, I was frustrated. I probably said things I shouldn’t have. Exhibit A: “As much as this sucks, I can’t help thinking about the bright side: the day, very soon, when I will no longer own a vehicle of any kind.”
I was referring to our impending move to Central America–most likely Honduras–and the fact that we won’t be owning a car down there. My piece-of-shit Jetta appears to have taken it personally.
Today I was driving to work, then suddenly I wasn’t. Instead, I was coasting. No backfire, no lurch, not so much as a click or grind. It was as if the piece-of-shit Jetta merely turned itself off with just enough momentum to coast safely into an approaching farm yard. This, as the car surely knew, was a road with absolutely no shoulder, so timing mattered.
It apparently also knew there was no particular cell coverage in the area, so calling Diana to come rescue my late-for-work ass was not really an option. Unless of course, the farmer’s family was home. NOTE: This post is not a ‘farmer’s daughter” joke in disguise. It really happened, just this morning.
To make matters worse, the farm dog appeared to be a recent descendent of the wolf breed. Not barking, but keenly aware of my arrival.
All of this, along with the fact that I had a full day of meetings, including a new business presentation, on my schedule conspired to fill me with a profound sense of…calm. I’m still not joking. For the life of me, I couldn’t figure out how to give a flying fuck. The Jetta had spoken, the cell phone hadn’t, and wolfy was going to do what wolfy was going to do.
I stepped out of the piece of shit, extended my Iphone to the AT&T Gods, and received a blip. Not really a bar, mind you, but that first little baby mark in the lineup; the one that’s no longer than it is wide and therefore cannot seriously be called a ‘bar.’ Still, I accepted this zygote with surprising optimism and punched out a quick text to Diana. The ‘sending’ bar was slow to fill, but I heard the all-important swoosh of modern-day communication just a split second before my reception nub hitched a ride out of there.
Ten minutes later, a second vagabond blip brought Diana’s reply: “Be right there.”
There’s nothing like finally yielding the illusion of control to a world that was never really playing along anyway. I ended up making my meetings and selling my campaign with a little help from my Dad’s piece-of-shit Toyota pickup.
Also, the wolf didn’t eat me. Turns out he just needed a scratch behind the ears.