What a great day this started out as! I finally slept 6 uninterrupted hours last night. Had a nice walk with DaBoys through a morning-hushed neighborhood. Heard some good jokes on the radio while putting on my makeup. And finally- after weeks of trying to remind it who's boss - my hair looked FABULOUS this morning. I felt like one of those Breck girls on the back of my mom's Good Housekeeping magazines when I was little. All was right with the world, and I fairly skipped out of the house 45 minutes earlier than I usually leave.
I'd gone about 20 miles when my car started shuddering and all the dashboard lights started blinking and I couldn't go more than 40 miles an hour.
I managed to get to the side of the road and call for a tow and then for my husband. As luck would have it, as soon as I pulled over the heavens unleashed torrents of rain. Buckets. Deluges. Virtual oceans of rain. Nothing to do but sit and wait. I found a notebook in my purse and wrote a note to Mike, my mechanic. Then I wrote "Thank you" on a piece of paper, wrapped it around my keys and put them in the visor for the tow guy. All the while, passing cars were slinging sheets of water at my car so hard that the car rocked. I wondered if I shouldn't maybe write just a few more words in case someone hydroplaned into me. Just about the time I started to get really cold, I saw the watery headlights of my husband's Jeep in my rear view mirror. I thought better of getting out the drivers door. I gathered my purse (or "suitcase" as Ken calls it) and another bag just as big that had my lunch and some paperwork in it. Oh- and my medium iced coffee from Dunkin Donuts. I slid over the console into the passenger seat in a rather unladylike manner, managing to stuff my raincoat in my armpits in the process. I got myself more or less in order before opening the passenger door just enough to stick out my umbrella out to pop it open. With one last glance toward the Jeep, I got out.
I landed in an ankle-deep puddle of cold rainwater, holding an umbrella over my head that was now turned inside out. The wind whipped open my raincoat and I was instantly soaked in places that I typically dry off after a shower. I may have said a few things as I threw the damn umbrella toward the woods, then slogged my way back to the Jeep. The passing traffic seemed to organize itself in a manner to continuously soak me in streams of water and spray. Of course, once I got to the Jeep (was there really a need to park six blocks behind my car????), getting in the Jeep posed its own special challenge thanks to Ken's huge off road tires. I will never be characterized as "tall" so over the years, I've devised this little runhopjump sequence that usually lands me far enough up inside the Jeep that I can claw myself the rest of the way in. But this time, I was on sloping, muddy ground in a monsoon. I tossed my bags in and Ken managed to drag me inside by my coat. And I think my hair.
I was cold. I was wet. I'd lost my coffee god knows where. From somewhere in the recesses of his mancave Jeep, Ken fished out a towel and wiped my face and hair in that clumsy way guys do when they're trying to help. Then he rubbed my cheeks and my forehead with his thumbs. What the. . . . ??? I was trying not to cry or yell and just squeaked out "Drive." So he did. Smart man.
I picked up my mother in law's car, ran home to change my clothes and then headed out again to go to work. Passed the tow truck with my car on it and resisted the urge to send it the one fingered salute. Arrived at work two hours late on a Monday morning when every minute was scheduled for something. I've not been late in a long while and everyone kept giving me weird glances.
Finally headed to the ladies room at noon and was scared witless by this uglyscary woman on the way in the door. Her hair was frizzed and piled over toward one side of her head and she had these weird streaks of - what was that???? - grease or something on her face. Then I realized with slow but certain horror that the uglyscary woman was my reflection in the mirror.
My FABULOUS hair??? Hahaha. Think Brillo pad meets firehose.
Ken tenderly wiping my face? Um, yeah - trying to wipe off the grease left by his towel. And apparently deciding not to say anything when he was unsuccessful.
I started to laugh sort of maniacally. And when my stomach hurt and I couldn't laugh anymore, I enlisted the aid of a couple of friends and we manage to locate enough hair care products and accessories that I emerged from the ladies room a half hour later looking almost kind of normal.
$275 later, I'm home and dry with a working car tucked safely into the garage.
Tomorrow morning, I'm not going for fabulous. Tomorrow morning, I'm going to settle for decent hair and arriving at work on time. I'm even going to forego the Dunkin Donuts. And I'm going to return the four pounds of hair accessories I scraped out of my hair tonight in the shower.
The password for Tuesday is mediocre.
Not fabulous. Mediocre will do just fine.