Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Can I Go Home Now?

All I wanted to do was go home.

While Monday had zipped by before I knew it, Tuesday dragged on and on and on. After adventures in yardwork Sunday, I came home Monday night to find that the mother had cut the three remaining juniper bushes and the mess was strewn out over half the yard – the yard I had mowed and gotten all the debris up out of barely 24 hours before.

I wanted to strangle her.

Instead, I bagged up the mess and loaded it and the other two brimming bags from Sunday and went to the dump. I made it there barely 10 minutes before it closed. The dragging, lugging and tugging was NOT fun, aggravating my already active pain points.

Still aching from Sunday, Monday night was torture. Each time I bent over to scoop up debris my back protested. So, on Tuesday night, my big plan was to go home and rest and do absolutely nothing else. I even snuck out of the office a few minutes early and snagged dinner. They managed to get my order done in enough time for me to make it to my usual bus stop. All seemed right with the world.

The bus was almost on time which was a miracle considering that ballgame traffic was beginning to clog downtown streets. But the good of it all seemed to end the second I got on the bus. Before I could even get situated, the driver laid on the gas, forcing her to stomp the brakes at the light a few feet away. A small container of mashed potatoes went hurtling to the floor, cracked open and dumped some of its contents. Sh*t.

I scooped up the container to salvage what I could and got a fistful of potatoes for my trouble. There I was, right hand covered in potatoes, left hand trying to find a napkin inside the bag with the rest of the food while simultaneously trying to keep that bag and my work bag from tumbling into the floor as the driver, hellbent on giving us whiplash, continued her race. I couldn’t locate any loose napkins but finally hit upon a plasticware set with a napkin inside. Have you ever tried to open one of those things with one hand? I’m sure I was producing quite the slapstick comedy by that point.

We were nearly out of downtown by the time I had managed the mess and gotten the bag securely tied and loaded into the seat. It’s at that point that I think I first heard the driver talking to HQ on her mike. “But there’s nowhere safe to pull over.” She got a garbled response and then muttered, “10-4.”

She gunned onto the 1-70 ramp and down the highway. At the exit, and just about at the foot of the bridge, she pulled the bus to the curb. The bus was leaking antifreeze and by this point, had none left. I’m glad she had the sense to insist that she didn’t try to make it over the bridge. It would have been much worse to have been stranded on a bus in the middle of a two-lane bridge at rush hour. As it was, we were blocking traffic trying to get to the bridge from the off-ramp.

While they did send another bus to get us, it was actually the next bus, 30 minutes later, that gave us a ride. (The bus they’d dispatched pulled up behind us as we were exiting the bus at the station.) Luckily, there were no trains or any other obstacles between there and home. It could have been a lot worse so I was grateful that it wasn’t.

It always seems to be the days you want to get home the most where you seem to get the least cooperation in making it happen. This has to be part of the premise on which Murphy’s Law is based.

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