Failing Fate: My Knight in his Shining Tow Truck
"Hey, um...do you need help?! I mean, uh...what happened?!" Some guy was yelling at me from the passenger side window in his white, sporty SUV, literally seconds after my car decided to putt, putt, die just a few tire turns away from hitting the intersection of Golf and Waukegan.
"I, uh...I think I'm okay! My car just died, and I just..." I look down at my phone, frantic. Ah, yes! Still battery life! "...I just was about to call my grandpa for help!"
"Okay! So...I mean do you need any help or you've got it from here?! Do you need me to help you?! I don't have any jumper cables, but..."
"Yeah, no, thanks though! I think it's actually dead! I just got a new battery and..."
"But someone's coming you said?!"
"Yeah, my grandpa! I'm about to call him!"
"Okay! Well good luck then!" The guy and that white SUV looked so peaceful as it whooshed past and joined once again the stampede of cars vroom-vroom-vrooming past, ignoring my dilemma. I would probably ignore my dilemma too, considering it's dinner-time and the lion that is my stomach is now growling a dull moan.
I call my grandpa; "Hey grandpa. I um, hah, I'm near the intersection of Golf and Waukegan, and you'll never believe...my car is completely dead." Capoot. Done for. I've run it into the ground. What a way to start the summer.
"Oh my goodness! Well, I'll leave the house right now and I'll be there in about 15-20mins! You aren't actually in the intersection are you?"
"I'm about three seconds away from being in the intersection."
"I'm on my way!"
My toungue is now officially numb (a personal side-effect of anxiety and frustration). I call Firestone. Their towing partners are on the way, "...be there in about 15-20 minutes..."
These cars keep swervin' around me, doing their dance of get-out-of-the-way-of-the-car-thats-not-moving. I got a few who even decided to add their own spice to the mix and honk their horn at me super loudly because that helps a lot and give me the dirty-eyebrows-evil-eye-glare for placing the death of my car on their road of choice for the evening. Gosh, I tell ya'...
And so I wait. I've got my hazard lights on and I've got the window rolled down. Just in case there is carbon monoxide leaking through the vents or something...My eyes stare at the blinking arrows. I feel my mouth form a frown. I glance up at the sky, and notice the clouds are a greyish-white color, and are in the shape up waves upside down, clothlike whisps of water droplets. Possible parallel universe? Upsidedown ocean? Mumford and Sons. Quite poetic. I wonder what Sylvia Plath would think of this moment...
BLAAAAARRRRRING HOOONNNNNKKKKKKKKKKKKKKK *grrrrowwwlllll* yes, I understand your anger at me. I am inconveniencing you and...oh, my! I look in my rearview mirror to find a long line of cars. sitting. behind me.
I look at the clock. Only five minutes have passed. I turn my keys and try to start the car again out of desperation. My whole mouth is numb by now. Possibly from the guilt I feel, though at this point I am quietly laughing to myself. This would happen the day after finals. I put the car in park, and continue for the next five minutes to play with the ignition.
Some guy stops his car in front of mine and puts his hazards on right as a cop shows up to inform me that I am blocking traffic (a comment I am just dying to make some smart-allec remark about but bite my tounge in knowing he has a taser).
In all seriousness, "Yes, sir, I know. I'm sorry. But my car is dead and I can't move it. The towing company should be here any minute to move it out of the way..."
And just then, out in the distance, traveling North on Waukegan, I can see my savior's carriage! "That's him! That's him! That's the tow truck!" The cop looked at the truck where my eyes lit up and nodded. "Are you sure that's him?" "Yes! I'm pretty certain!"
My grandpa and cousin pull up right behind me, blinking their hazard lights. The cop grudgingly got back into his police-car where he then parked behind my grandpa's car.
As I turn my head south, my hair whips around in the gust of wind that just whirrled past. I look up and see the tow truck make it's way in front of my car. Hallelujah!
And then, it happened. He happened. This sexy, 20-something, maybe 19-something, jumped from the drivers side of the truck. About six feet tall, with eyes like cocoa beans, and skin like coffee: two cream, two sugar; stirred slowly to dissolve the sweetness in the steaming liquid caffine.
I'm awake now. Damn.
My mouth must have been hanging open or I must have been staring longer than I was aware, because when I turned my head to the sound of chuckles, my relatives in the yellow Aveo sitting behind me were laughing. My awkward-self quickly realized I was standing on a very busy street with lots of fast moving enginges.
I stumbled my way over to my rescuer, quite aware that I had hands and a purse and arms and was not quite sure what to do with them other than "cooly" sway them back and forth. I think I nearly muttered, "Do you need any help?", in my attempts to seem casual and coy.
WOOSH! WOOSH! WOOSH! Yep, casual. And super coy.
He turned to look at me and said, "I need your keys." And I swear, when I handed them over to those rugged work gloves, I felt an electrical spark, like lightnining!
"So, whuh...so, what should I...I mean, where should I go?" Mumbling fool. I'm so clever with words.
"You can either ride back with me or your family, either way..."
"Oh, okay, cool. Either way." I smiled.
To seem cool and careless (in a time of a bitsy predicament), I decided to prance my way over to the Aveo, and get into the car with my grandpa and cousin. Guys like it when girls play hard to get...oh my gosh look at him work...I wonder if I should go back to sit with him in the car...but then grandpa would wonder what I'm doing...why can't I just make up my mind...Look at him towing my car...Maybe I could get away with just getting into the front seat right now...
I start to open the door, and slowly place my left foot on the asphalt. "What're doin' there, kiddo? You going somewhere?" My grandpa laughs. "Oh, no. I was just, thinking..." I close the door, and watch the Focus make it's way onto the Tow Truck. We begin to drive to Firestone, and on the way we poke fun at the situation, my grandpa saying, "Isn't this exciting?!" I quite appreciate their optimism, despite my growing nervousness that I lost the chance to meet the love of my life.
We get out of the car and the guy wuickly gives me back the keys to my car, R.I.P. I say thanks, but cannot look him in the face. I'm too shy, too upset that I blew my chance. "Good luck with your car." "Thank you." "Have a good night." He tells me, and I say the same. Then he says it back again. Then I say goodbye. And he tells me, goodbye.
I say, "Goodbye." Then, I sign for the diagnostic test.
The classic story of a damsel in distress being rescued by a knight in shining armor didn't translate so well in modern times. On my way back home, I felt the weight of regret for my decision to not ride with the mysterious man (who would have probably ended up being my future husband had I found the ability to make my way into his truck, just saying). I didn't even catch his name. I feel like when we parted ways at Firestone, we told eachother longingly, "Have a good life..."
What I do know is this: fairy-tales don't happen unless you take a magical moment and allow yourself to turn it into a storybook happily-ever-after. Which is slightly difficult to do when you suffer from a case of thinks-too-much-but-not-in-the-good-way syndrome.
I was given the opportunity to meet my future husband, and start a magical, fateful romance. I didn't take it. I missed my chance for love and am forever going to remember this day, and wonder what could have been.
As for my car, I need a new alternator. Firestone estimated about $650.00 in total charges, which my cousin said is an outrageous price.
Me being the poor-college-student I am, I need to save money where I can. I'll probably call to have it towed to another place.