Thursday, January 26, 2012

How Not to Save Money

As you all know, I dropped Johnny off at UVA last week and then went to WV for a job interview. As you all also know, grandma and grandad were out of state.

Now my original plan was to call someone and arrange for a place to stay, but between putting it off a little and an unexpected happening which filled my time in UVA, by the time I needed to go to WV, I still hadn't called anyone. Now I wasn't exactly comfortable calling someone up and saying--hey, I know we haven't talked in a while, but can a crash on your couch for the night--I mean I'm giving you three whole hours notice. So I decided to sleep in the car.

Yes it was supposed to get cold and snow. I pulled up into mom and dad's driveway which was about half an hour from where I would interview the next morning, set my phone alarm, curled up under a sleeping bag and started to doze off in the front seat of my car.

Suddenly I thought... wait, do I have enough battery charge left on the phone for it to last till morning? Nope, I don't. It was getting cold, so I started up the car. Don't have a phone charger... Maybe there is a plug on the porch. Sure is. Score! Plug the phone in and let it charge while I warm up in the.....

I never lock my doors. But for some reason, they were all locked. The car is running. I'm in my socks. It's eleven thirty at night and the whole neighborhood is asleep.

I search around for any way to get into the car. No luck. I look for a wire to try to open a door with. Can't find one. Mom and dad really did lock all the windows to the house well too.

The only way I can think of to call the police is 911 and this is NOT a true emergency. It's getting colder, and my feet aren't too happy. I take a walk toward the main road. Everything is closed. No phone books available either. Freezing! On the way back I notice a For Sale By Owner Sign. It's got wire! I can put it back together after I get the car open or not.

I try to jiggle the wire around in the door crack for something short of an eternity before I realize this is NEVER going to work. I have an interview tomorrow, am freezing now, and the car is going to run out of gas because there was only a quarter tank in it in the first place. I have no idea what time it is. What do you know, the phone is charged!

That doesn't help me get into the car though. Break a window. Okay, I know what car windows cost. About 275 plus labor for one of the automatic side windows $450 or so all together. About $250 altogether for a front or back windshield. I don't like either of those options--AT ALL.

Neither do I like hypothermia and a missed job interview. The car has fixed and very small triangular windows right behind the backseat side windows. They have to be cheaper. Right?

How hard could it be? Take a rock about the size of two of my fists and.... Bam, Bam, Bam! BAM, BAM, BAM, bam? Car windows don't break anywhere nearly as easily as movies lead you to believe. I take a break. Two more tries; the glass shatters--my fist goes right on through. No problem. I unlock the door and stuff a coat in the hole. Start to go to sleep.

My hand is wet. REALLY wet. I drive to Walmart and go to the bathroom. I look in the mirror. They let me in the store like this? I look like I just killed someone. Blood streaked down my face and my coat. My hand is dripping and looks like I've been soaking it in a vat of blood for some reason.

No pain. I clean up thoroughly and wrap my hand in paper towels. Head out to the car and break open the first aid kit. Then I bandage up and drive back to the house, stopping to put a sign back together on the way.

I did manage to go to sleep that night. And I got to the interview looking presentable. Even if I did have my shirtsleeves rolled up inside my suit jacket to hide the bloodstains.

By the way, Lowes won't cut plexiglass at anything other than right angles. And Johnny, you don't happen to still have the other key to the car do you?


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