Okay, so I KNOW that those lines in the parking lot are there for a reason. You are supposed to park your vehicle between two of the lines. I know this. I have just never paid a lot of attention to those lines.
Roy is meticulous about them. He will pull into a parking space with his driver’s door open enough so he can see that he’s between the lines. Or, he will make me get out and guide him in the correct spot. It always seemed like excessive effort to me.
This week, that attitude was revised, with some help from a large green pickup. I was parked at a McDonald’s where the take-out line was long and very narrow, so I decided to just park and run inside for my order. I parked, went inside and quickly got my to go bag and cup. When I came back out a mere five minutes later, there was a pickup parked next to me. To my outrage, he was snuggled up, no more than six inches from my driver’s door.
My immediate reaction was to march back in that store and demand that the pickup owner move out of my way, even while I was a little impressed that he got that close without doing damage to either of us. My second thought was why would he do that? Was he trying to be funny? Was he trying to be mean?
Finally, I took a good look at the way I was parked and I was quite definitely parked over the line and he had simply parked where he was supposed to–I was the one who was too close. Oh…now what?
I went to the passenger’s side and slipped into the car. Could I climb over the car console to get under the wheel? A few years ago, you bet, but now, I’m older; my body doesn’t always cooperate the way I would like. Still, that’s no reason not to try, right?
I slid one leg across the console and then lifted my hip to follow. My hip caught on the corner of the console and refused to go further. With pain causing my eyes to twitch, I finally managed to get my rear onto the console and at that point, I realized that my remaining leg on the passenger side was pushing my bag of sandwich and fries into the floor. I didn’t have to taste it to know that this would not enhance the quality.
By a series of twists and jerks, I managed to get my posterior in the driver’s seat. That just left the second leg to get over the console. Smashing my upper body against the driver’s door, I attempted to fold and pull the leg over to join the rest of my body. It didn’t work.
Resting my foot on the dashboard, I contemplated the fact that I should just have gone back into the restaurant, apologized for being a clod about parking and asked the pickup owner to move for me. Unfortunately, my body was so entirely wedged in the driver’s side (except for that one leg and foot), that I could not unstick myself to get back into the passenger seat.
If you’re still with me now, I want you to imagine the scene. I’m sitting on the driver’s side of the car with one foot and leg bent up on the dashboard like a rather odd-looking pretzel. I couldn’t move my leg or body to make it back to the passenger seat and if I ever did get out of this, I still had to back out on a narrow lane past a very close pickup.
I could not, however, in that position, even reach my squashed bag of lunch and it was about at this point in time I realized that my rear was wet because I had sat on my drink. That’s going to leave an interesting stain in the car, that’s for sure.
Okay, I decided something had to be done and perhaps I was going to have to fold myself into an even smaller pretzel or figure out how to drive the car with one foot on the driver’s dash and my eyes distended to the windshield in pain.
Slowly, and with my shoe leaving black marks across the top of the windshield, I brought the foot across over the steering wheel, bent in a position I haven’t been able to achieve since my days as a toddler. With a great deal of grunting, and bones popping, I managed to bring my foot down onto the floor where it was supposed to be. Praise be!
I sat there for a few minutes, adjusting myself to being unbent again, when—and of course, you know what’s coming next: the driver of the pickup came out, got into his vehicle and backed out, leaving my driver’s door easily accessible.
Thinking quickly, I grabbed my mangled lunch bag and stepped out of the car. “Would you like a mashed hamburger?” I hollered, waving the bag at him, “also, would you like some squashed fries with that?” He looked at me, yelling and waving the bag and gunned the motor so he shot out of the parking lot. I can’t help it, you know…being twisted into a pretzel causes a lack of blood flow to the brain.