Saturday, June 19, 2010

A SWAT team, a Parking Ticket, and a Fire Alarm

Josie's chopped hair, and a lovely parking ticket. Did you know you get $10 off if you pay it within 72 hours?

...Yes, today has been an exciting day
. Actually, it was more like a day where things were consistently not working out. After finally making a vehicle purchase this week I drove three and a half hours out to visit Josie, for a final visit with my college friend. We had spent time together at the lake house, and throughout the chaos of last week's wedding, but after the chaos that has been my life these last couple months I knew a couple nights with Josie and her spouse would be a nice break.

After staying up until midnight watching the Lakers win a title (to the delight of my spouse) Josie and I were both awake at eight the next morning, readying to go out on a run. We planned a route to run downtown to the local farmers market, and after getting lost for a mile, found it to be closed. "Oh well," we mused as we snuck in to get a cold drink of water. It was blazing hot as we ran the three miles, largely uphill, back to the apartment. We regrouped, and headed out for the errands on tap for the day: check a TB test, get a haircut, fax some documents, cash in coupons for free iced coffee.

First stop: TB test. After failing to fill the meter with Canadian quarters (they're worth more than American quarters right now--why not take them?) I stayed with the car while Josie went in to get her test read. Fail--they were closed for lunch, as of one minute ago.

Next stop: Master Cuts. Josie chopped fourteen inches off for a fresh new look, and we swung by Bath and Body Works on our way out with coupons for free samples. Success.

Back to First Stop: Took the quarters we got from Master Cuts to fill the meter while going in for test reading. After getting a number and settling in to wait, we heard a loud high pitched noise followed by flashing lights. Fire Alarm? Really? We evacuated the building while all sorts of police cars and fire engines and ambulances surrounded the building. At this point, we went in search of lunch.

Back to First Stop: Stopped and refilled the meter after lunch on the way to try and get the TB test read--for the third time. The ten second reading left us free to pursue the fax machine. Note: Faxing documents has become obscenely offensive as it has become more archaic. If you don't have ready access to a fax machine, sending something from Kinkos will cost you roughly $2 a page. Per page. This is highway robbery.

We returned to the vehicle to find a parking ticket on the windshield. Lovely... I'm not sure how many minutes late we were in returning to the vehicle, but my guess is approximately two.

We just couldn't win.

Having finally accomplished the necessary tasks of the day, we set off to pick up the free iced coffees. On the way home while sitting at a stop light we watched a line of fully armed police looking fellows walk, and then run up to a house. As they approached, several police cars came flying around the corner, lights blazing, and surrounded the house. The cops jumped out and pulled out their guns just as the line-up of men yelled (just like in the movies) "Police! We have a search warrant! Open up!"

At this point Josie and I were trying to drive around this quickly developing scene, feeling like we were a little too close for comfort. After all, we could have literally touched one of the armed, ready cops out the passenger window.

We made it home about three hours later than originally estimated, and laughed while we recapped the day for Josie's husband. Sometimes things work out just as planned; other times you can't win no matter how many quarters you stick in the meter.

I have not always been good at rolling with the proverbial punches, but after this month, I am certainly improving my skills.

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