Today was a day of highs, lows, and anything in between. And I think the ‘ride’ was what I needed after the experiences of the past few posts..
So… About today. I have an absolute staggering amount of work I brought home that HAS TO BE DONE in the next couple of days. No other options. On deadlines, and already my being out of the office for nearly a month is killing me. First providing training at a conference, then attending training that spanned over a few days, then out for vacation in NOLA, back two days with nothing but back to back meetings… then out again for a week and a half to burn some vacation days so I only lose a sickeningly moderate amount rather than a sickeningly HUGE amount.
My plans for today were simple:
- Get up and moving at a decent time this AM
- Go for a run and/or lift at the gym
- Meet friends at a Latin eatery for a late lunch
- Pick up cat food and cat litter before I have an ‘Occupy’ scenario at home
- Get the car washed
- Stop a couple of places on the way home… pick up makeup at Ulta, grab some additional organizational supplies and things I have put off at Target
- Get all my stuff entered in a database (53 pages) and start on other reports, etc.
But, as my usually tightly organized. managed life has been the exception lately rather than the norm, most of that did not happen.
Getting moving early? Nope. Woke up early, and laid in bed with the kitty divas. And I was in S-L-O-W motion this am… Which leads me to…
Going on a run or a work out? Nope. My stomach is upset, and my spine and hips feel like glass that has shattered. I wimped. Today.
I checked my accumulating pile of mail, and found a check that I had forgotten I was getting, and did not notice that I received. It was a nice amount, and I considered running in to the bank to deposit it in person, but I did not make it. As I left the parking garage, a woman smoking in front of a restaurant complimented my dress. She asked me a couple of questions about where I got it, and what my exercise routine was. It was a nice exchange. Late, I joined my friends at the restaurant, and enjoyed a tasty meal. Sweet plantains, pabelion arepa slider, and mocha flan. I left there, and after some gate mechanical issues I was able to exit the parking garage.
My first stop was the pet store. I visited the shelter kitties, who break my heart. I got cat food and litter. Keep in mind, my divas are not out of cat food, they have an ample amount in their bowl, and I do have a small back up container that they are unaware of. But, this morning, they saw the container in which I store their main supply of food was <gasp> empty! The world is ending as they know it. Babies will be born naked. And I will not sleep or have a urine free bathroom floor until I rectify that situation. NOW.
I also got them a cat bed. (That several hours later, no one has even looked at, let alone laid in it. Great use of $40.) And some new toys. And I took the cart, the 40 pounds of litter and my other purchases to my car. I started to unload the cart, and I placed my purse on the edge of my trunk, noting that I should not do that… how bad would that SUCK if I shut the deck lid with my purse, keys, etc. in there? Ugh! So I loaded the car.
And shut the trunk. Firmly. And I did not grab my handbag.
I. AM. SO. SCREWED!!!!
After the frantic pulling on my trunk lid, and a quick run around the car jerking on the doors, I realize that:
- My phone is in my handbag, as my casual tank dress has no pockets, and I left my denim jacket in the back seat of the car. All my phone numbers are in my phone. I might remember 2, maybe three friends’ numbers. MAYBE. And the kicker? As always, I am on-call for my job. And my phone is in my purse, in the trunk.
- All keys are in my handbag as well.
- So is my wallet with cash, my AAA card, ID, credit cards, etc. And it looks like it is going to storm.
- I go inside the store. They are extremely busy, but the veterinary clinic is not. I ask to use the phone. I call a friend who is close, and has a house key, but no answer on her cell, and I cannot remember her home number. It is obvious that I am in the way and inconveniencing the vet staff, so trying to get a number for AAA or someone else is just not going to happen. They want me gone, and NOW. I walk back to the manager’s office. Closed up. The room in the back where sick animals, etc. are? No one there.
I am so screwed. My road service on my car by the manufacturer expired approximately 70,000 miles ago, and I know that attempting to get into my car is tough after a failed break in attempt of it recently. I am feeling the pressure of time, and I decide that I will just suck it up, knock out the rear side window, and search for a used one to R&I. But, I cannot get into my trunk, and my footwear is soft canvas shoes. Maybe I can bang my head on it? I see a gentleman loading items into his Sequoia, so I politely ask him if I can borrow his tire iron for two minutes. He asks why… and I tell him. He asks several questions, and asks to see my car. Once we walk over, he states he does not want to break a window on such a nice car. He pulls out his phone, and calls information, gets the number for AAA, and calls them, hands the phone to me. I am able to get them to come… grudgingly… by promising that I have my ID in my purse, in the car. They tell me it will be a half hour. I again thank the gentleman and attempt to send him on his way. He asked to stay, and said he would feel better knowing that I was in my car and safe.
Long story short, he was interesting and lovely to talk to. My friend saw she had missed two calls, called the vet office, and someone from the store ran out to see if I was still there. I spoke with her, but we determined AAA would get there faster. I let the gentleman know, and he again asked to wait with me. AAA arrived, and after the ‘ID is in my purse in my trunk discussion’ he used an airbag, and with some difficulty, managed to get the car unlocked. Yup- it is a tough car to break into. I silenced the alarm, popped the trunk and grabbed my purse and wallet, produced my driver’s license, and was pulling cash out of my wallet. Before I could act, the gentleman gave the AAA a nice tip, and the AAA person was gone. I thanked him again, advised him I could have given him the tip, and I had cash… He kindly told me that he was happy to do that, and during our discussion I mentioned what I do for a living, and that he felt responsible to ’pay kindness forward, and again, that was how [he] did things’. I thanked him multiple times, and we parted.
He spent over an hour with me in the pet store parking lot. I ran my errands, overspent on time as well as money that I intended… and got home. I am taking a break from working, and I will get my ‘to do’ list done tomorrow. What a nice, kind, and thoroughly generous gentleman. There are few people who would take the time, the risk, and the effort that he did to help a perfect stranger. And although it was very uncomfortable, I was able to ask for and fully accept, help. For once.
I so appreciate his help. Would I have gotten it done by myself? Yes. Would it have been a larger ordeal? Absolutely… and a significant cost to replace the rear side window. Shopping I found the lovely knife set that I have been watching for the past year, and it was at significant discount. So I got them. I think this is the first time in my adult life that I have had really nice, sharp knives. And what is the first thing I do? Slice my thumb open. And the lessons continue…
Everyone needs help once in a while. And helping sometimes is its own reward. I also saw very clearly today what I have been giving lip service to for a couple of weeks … that I cannot keep up this pace. I am off my schedule, and I am not sleeping long or well. I am not getting things done at the normal pace that I usually do, and I am making a lot of STUPID mistakes. Thoughtless mistakes. We will not discuss the one I made at the makeup store parking… And usually the exception to the rule, the past few days, even past few weeks, these mistakes are becoming the rule rather than the exception.
I will figure it out. And I will keep striving for balance. The stakes are entirely too high, and the outcome to precious.
Wish me success. I am not completely sure what that will look like, but I am becoming clearer.