Tuesday, December 11, 2007

That's not on the list.

I couldn't sleep last night, waking at 12:30 and being unable to get back to sleep until nearly 4. But I woke with a heartfelt groan at 6:30 and rolled out of bed to a sunny morning. I was anxious and sleepy so I began making a list of all the things left to do before leaving tomorrow for my interview. Printing literature, revising Problematic Paper, canceling my appointment tomorrow morning (I can't handle extra stress right now), packing, laundry, cleaning, wrapping the last few Christmas gifts, finding brown pants to wear with my pink sweater on Thursday and making sure I have stockings that are without runs. I'd like to pick up snacks for Friend and make sure the bedding is all freshly laundered. Oh, and I needed to get my oil changed. I'm nearly 2,000 miles over and that's rare for me.

I have a garage I like that's close to my house - they've taken care of tires and oil and general car-related stuff I pay only vague attention to. I rather like waving my hand regally when presented with estimates for the rare extra work, telling them to do what they must. I should have known something was wrong when my oil change stretched close to an hour, but I continued to flip through the paper, contenting myself with an ad when I was finished with the news, thinking I would use the coupon Friend offered when I found brown pants.

"Kathryn?" The car guy said, approaching me with a printed sheet. I don't know why I give people my full name - sometimes I do, sometimes I don't. "You have a coolant leak. [Something about car parts and how fast the leak was - I don't know.] You don't have to fix it immediately, but it should be done soon."

"I'm driving to an interview." I said, thinking nervously about my list. "Can it make it north and back?"

"Oh, I wouldn't." He said. "It's a pretty good leak." So instead of an careless wave of my hand, I nodded with wide eyes. Then I thought frantically about the list that rested neatly in my purse and how I could accomplish none of the tasks by sitting in this waiting room without my laptop or transportation.

"Um, how long will this take?" I called as he went behind the counter.

"An hour and a half?" He guessed and I nodded.

"Could someone maybe take me home?" I asked, thoughts of laundry and cleaning and papers and revisions and my list running through my head.

"Sure." He said easily and I felt a moment of regret for inconveniencing them.

"Thank you." I said after car guy told me that they wouldn't get the part until after lunch and waved me toward a truck out front. "I'm sorry you have to do this - I didn't know I had a problem or I would have arranged for a ride." I told car girl who was driving me home. Then I frowned - Friend has her own car problems and I didn't know who else would fetch me. "Wait!" I said before she pulled into traffic. "I need my garage door opener or I can't get inside." So I scampered back to the building and returned to climb in the cab with my small device in hand. She dropped me off and complimented my cute house and promised to return for me later.

It's almost a relief to be trapped here - to do what I can (and there's a lot) from here and worry about shopping later tonight. But, still. I don't like it when the list goes awry. But I at least feel awake and productive - perhaps there's hope for a modified form of the list.

1 comment:

Day ByDay said...

Don't you hate it when life throws you something to mess with your list?? Sometimes it's not so bad though - better to be stuck at home right now and still be able to get some of the things on your list done, than to be stranded due to car troubles half way to your interview! :)

Speaking of which, I wish you the best of luck! I have the utmost confidence that you will knock their socks off!!

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