Trapped

Lots of things freak me out.  Like clowns, and small spaces, and bookshelves that aren’t alphabetized.

And being lost.

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Except I’m not cute when I’m lost.  I’m swearing and shaking and jumping at shadows and it’s terrible.  Once my brain decides I’m lost, I pretty much believe I’ll spend the rest of my life as a hobo and never see or speak to anyone I love ever ever again.

And the fun thing about me is that even if I know where I am geographically, I’ll still flip into “lost” mode if I run into an unfamiliar situation.

 

Cue: our story.

 

Once upon a time, I went to visit some of my old high school friends on their college campus.  Since we didn’t go to the same university, I was fairly unfamiliar with the campus layout, (translation: lost mode kicks in immediately).  As anyone will tell you, trying to find parking on a campus located in the middle of a city is a nightmare.  Finding my friends’ apartment wasn’t enough – I had to find somewhere to park too.  By the time I’d located a parking garage, my nerves were shot.  (Side note: at this point in my life, I was also not a pro a using parking garages.)

Anyway, I made it, found my friends, hung out, blah blah blah happiness and friendship.  And then it was time for me to go back to where I belonged.  Since it was dark and late and a college campus, my friends (lovely people that they are) walked me to my car.  I offered to drive them back to their apartment, and here’s where things get fun.

We all piled in to my Volvo (affectionately named Volvo Baggins), and I realized that my car was the only car left in the garage.  I hate being the only car left in parking garages.  It’s creepy and weird and everything starts to feel like the beginning of a horror movie.  So I was already a little nervous because you never know when some crazy chainsaw wielding monster is going to crash onto the scene.

I pulled up to the pay station for the garage, and put my car in park so I could reach up and feed my ticket into the machine and pay (I have T-rex arms, unfortunately).  Keep in mind though, that I was already nervous and uncertain: a) because horror movies and darkness and b) because parking garages and c) because residual lost mode.  As a result, I accidentally shifted my car from park into reverse, not drive.  When the gate opened to let me out, I promptly reversed my car backwards five feet – much to my surprise and horror.  In the time it took me to shift into drive and make up the lost ground, the gate had closed again.  (Remember how earlier I said I wasn’t a parking garage pro?)

We were trapped.  I had already fed the ticket machine my ticket, I had paid, but I wasn’t out.  And all my friends were in my back seat.  Enter full blown lost mode.  At this point my memory is a little hazy, but I think I frantically drove around in circles in the garage trying to find a secret way out.  I think I even briefly considered just trying to smash through the garage gate (obviously not a great plan).

Finally, I pulled up to the gate again and found a call button.  I don’t know who it called or why they were awake, but I had to explain to them that I had managed to get myself and several friends trapped in a parking garage.  Fortunately they believed me, and by some magic opened the gate.

I have them to thank for the fact that I’m not still living in my Volvo in a parking garage, trapped until the end of time.

 

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