Thursday, July 14, 2016

Car Trouble

 Life just hasn't been exciting enough for me lately.  So, I decided I would almost back my van into a ditch while leaving the home of Katie's harp teacher.  Her driveway is very steep and I was asking Katie about her lesson so I didn't realize that the driveway not only curves a little bit at the bottom, it also has a deep drainage ditch on either side of it.  

I realized it when my left rear wheel hit the ditch.  I tried to pull forward and was able to make it a little way up the steep hill but after a few moments I was completely off the driveway and was stuck in the mud and wet grass.  I tried going forward, backward, and sideways to no avail.

I left Katie sitting in the front seat as I trudged back up to the house to tell Katie's harp teacher, "Hi, I'm a moron and I think I'm al little teensy bit stuck."  I knocked on her door and then turned to look back at Katie and realized I was not so stuck after all as my van was at that exact moment sliding backwards down the hill with my darling daughter in the front seat looking at me with her eyes wide as saucers.

I thought my running days were behind me, but as it turns out, I am quite a sprinter when the situation calls for it.  I took off down the driveway and reached the van just as it jolted to a stop.  The whole way I was thinking, "Did I freaking FORGET to put it in PARK!?!?"  I had after all, just spent some time putting it in forward and reverse, forward and reverse, trying to get it out of the mud.  
When I reached the van and snatched the door open I could see that the van was in park.  I quickly asked Katie, "Did you touch the gear shift?"  I thought maybe she had just put it in park when she realized it was sliding.  

She was laughing so hysterically she could barely answer, "No! I was just sitting here!"  I had actually put it in park but apparently the mud and slick grass were just not enough to support the weight of the van.  I had only thought I was stuck before - now I was very much stuck in a ditch, blocking half of the road, and with one wheel merrily up in the air not even touching the ground.  


I got Katie out of the van posthaste and sent her back inside with her harp teacher - who had been standing with her hands clamped over her mouth staring in horror.  I called for a tow truck and when they asked me if I was in a safe spot I responded with near hysteria, "I'm blocking half the road!  Someone's going to come along and hit me!"

Amazingly at that moment, a fireman happened along and asked what had happened.  I explained the situation and told him that a tow truck was on the way.  He told me he would radio it in and then he left. I went into the house to sit with Katie.  The harp teacher had gone to lie down because she had a headache.  Imagine that.  I was shaking so hard I nearly collapsed into the chair.  I was there less than a minute when a policeman happened by and turned on his flashing blue lights when he spotted the van.  I headed back outside.

I explained what had happened.  He remarkably didn't ask me to take a breathalyzer.  He told me he would just sit there with his lights on to keep anyone from running into the van.  I told him the tow company had said it would be about thirty minutes before they could get there.  He told me, "It's okay.  I have reports I need to fill out so I'll do that while I sit here."

Thankfully, the tow truck got there about five minutes later.  It took him quite a bit of maneuvering to get the van back onto the street.  There was shockingly no damage to the van.  

Most of the damage was to my ego which was mangled by the whole process.

The harp teacher told me I might want to just park on the street from now on.

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