Car Story #1
I lose my car at the mall all the time. I refuse to admit that it’s because I’m scatterbrained and geographically challenged, and instead prefer to blame the stupid layout of the mall. I usually think Belk is the most convenient place to park, but Belk has several entrances and it’s tough to distinguish them from one another from inside the store. So, inevitably, I come out of the wrong entrance and go to the place in that lot where my car SHOULD be, and then my car isn’t there. This is what happened on Friday. Sammi and I came out of the mall, and it was getting dark, and we went to the approximate place in the lot where my car should be, and it wasn’t there.
Sam knows I lose my car a lot. She asked me if it was possible that my car was in the other lot. I said no way, I was sure this was the lot, and probably I’d just picked the wrong row. So we wandered around in that lot and my car was nowhere to be seen. Even though I do this all the time, every time it happens I start to get this tiny rising fear in the back of my throat that maybe this time someone stole my car. I figured I’d hit the panic button on my keyless entry thingie, and the car would start freaking out to tell me where it was. The only problem is that the panic button won’t work if you’re too far away from the car. My car didn’t respond, and the lack of response finally convinced us that the car must be in another lot, which was like a million miles away. Or maybe it was just around the corner.
As we were walking, Sammi finally decided that this was the most hilarious thing ever, and she was laughing her ass off and I was repeatedly jabbing the panic button with my thumb and nothing was happening. “What the hell? I AM panicking. Where the hell is my car?” I kept asking, and evidently the more I said I was panicking, the funnier Sammi found it.
Finally, we saw my little blue car, complete with Northwestern stickers, and when we were about six feet away from it, it started honking and flashing its lights as if relieved to see us. The panic button worked.
I already found the damn thing. THANKS FOR NOTHING, PANIC BUTTON.
When we were leaving Target later that night, Sammi said, “Wouldn’t it be hilarious if you lost your car again?” We were walking toward the back of the center aisle, near the cart corral where I remembered parking the car, and right as we got close enough to see that my car was not, in fact, in that spot near the cart corral, I cursed and wheeled around and headed back toward the store, where the car was actually parked four spaces from the front. We’d walked right past it.
Car Story #2
Ginny and I were driving around in Dayton looking for Mennonite buggies when my cell phone rang. Mom’s number was on the caller ID, but when I answered the phone, it was Jamie calling from Roanoke.
“Mom just hit me with the car!” she announced with something like glee in her voice.
After she assured me that she was okay, I put her on speakerphone so she could tell me and Ginny about how Mom was picking her up at McDonald’s and was trying to move forward to avoid a car behind her just as Jamie was crossing in front of the car, and bam! she hit Jamie. We encouraged her to hold this over Mom’s head for a very long time, and Jay said she figured she could get out of dishes for a week or so over it.
We hung up with her and immediately called Sammi, who was in line at the dollar theater in Lynchburg. We told her Mom had hit Jamie with the car but that everyone was fine, and she practically hung up on us so she could call Jamie immediately and get the story.
Later, Mom wryly observed that “good news travels fast.” I just told her that her reckless antics were no match for the Hoover Sisters Information Network.