Tuesday, October 29, 2013
SLICE OF LIFE
Three of them. All from Son #2.
"I'm locked out of my car."
"The key's inside."
"Can you send the extra key?"
The extra key happens to be in the side pocket of my purse. It's been there since I drove to Arizona a few weeks ago. I debated leaving it then, but Son #2 is the type of guy who NEVER loses his keys.
And gets annoyed when his mother (regularly) loses her keys.
I didn't think he would need the key and I thought it would be safer with me.
At lunchtime, I call him.
"How did you lock your keys in the car?"
"My lanyard broke. I didn't know the key wasn't on it."
I try to picture this scenario. Push away other scenarios that might involve illegal or unsafe activities which could also result in keys being left in cars. Decide that since it's 9:00 on Monday morning, the story is possibly (probably?) legit.
"So can you mail the key?"
I sigh. Think about a day that is already going to end after six o'clock. And about the funds (or lack of funds) in my non-existent, end of month, two kids in college bank account. The key is definitely not going express mail this week.
"I can, but it will probably take a few days to get there."
"That's ok. Can you just mail it?"
"Yeah, but it will be later on today. I'm at work."
"That's ok. Just mail it when you can."
The next text comes about three o'clock. I find it when I get done passing out the after school snacks for 75 children
"Have you mailed the key yet?"
"Not yet. I'm still at work."
At 6, I finish my last meeting of the day and dig through my purse to make sure the key is still there. It is and I walk out the back door, lugging my 25 pound computer bag, with the assistant principal. It's sleeting, one of those cold November rains that makes me think of chili or chicken noodle soup.
There is another text. I ignore it.
I get halfway to the car before I realize I am holding my son's keys in my hand. The keys that start my car are inside, on my desk, in the basement, inside the school, on the other side of the locked door.
Luckily, Vanessa is more than gracious. She has a key to the building and lets me back in, even waits with my purse and computer bag, while I trudge back downstairs to get my keys.
Fortunately, there is one post office that stays open late, maybe even until ten. And even more fortunately, it's not too far from my house. It's after rush hour, and traffic, which was probably bad earlier has died down.
Braving puddles and driving rain, not to mention a twenty-minute line at the post office, I mail the key, My stomach growls and I remember that I only had time to eat half of the left over salad I took for lunch.
I call my son. He is in the cafeteria eating dinner.
"I mailed the key. It will be there on Wednesday."
"Ok, thanks. I'm eating so I'll talk to you later." He hangs up.
I get home around 7:30. I am too tired for chili and settle for a Lean Cuisine. (Do all of those taste the same or is it just my imagination?)
About 9:00 the phone rings. Son #2 again.
"I got into the car."
"You did? How?"
A kid on my floor is a locksmith. He has all of his tools at school and he opened it for me."
"A kid on your floor is a locksmith?" This sounds a little unlikely.
"And he has all his tools at school?" A little more unlikely.
"Yeah, and he put this flat thing down the window." There is also an air pump involved in the story. I can't quite picture that. Again, I push away stories of illegal activities.
"The car was dead, but I jumped it and it's all good now."
"The car was dead?"
"Yeah, because the key was in the ignition."
"The key was in the ignition? Was it running?"
"No. It was just in the ignition."
Again, I try hard not to picture all of the reasons the key might have been left in the ignition.
"OK, glad you got it solved. The extra key will be there on Wednesday. Put it somewhere safe, ok?"
"Yeah, I will."
"OK, love you. Good night."
Yep. Just another day in the life of a long distance mother.