Yes, boys and girls, at about 5:45 p.m. I find myself in the middle of the parking lot, amidst the freezing rain, standing next to a car with a defunct battery.
The car is also trapped between two other cars whose owners are nowhere to be found. Hence, no way for anyone to get their car close enough to mine to jump start my poor Silver Bullet.
If I had not been so bloody cold and tired, the whole adventure would have been even funny.
"So what happened to you?" Says a random guy, watching me and my car, which has its hood open.
"Battery died out," I say.
"Oh, I could give you charge but I've got no jumper cables."
"I do," I reply as I show him the cables I've been holding in my hand all along.
"Oh," he says. "Can you put your car in neutral so we can push it back and I can help you?"
"Nope. It's an automatic and the damned thing won't budge. Damn safety features."
"Is there anything I can do?"
"Do you know who owns the two cars parked next to mine?"
"Well, then you can't help me, but thanks."
Mind you, this is about the fourth guy who offers help, bless his soul. But what boggles the mind is that none of them carry jumper cables. Me? I always carry the biggest, meanest, heavy duty cables money can buy, among other things.
A girl must always be prepared, God knows guys seldom are.
Not that it is of any help when you can't get access to your car but anyway . . .
In the end, we finally find out who is the owner of one of the cars (a brand new Mercedes shiny enough to make any of the guys drool). It belongs, as it happens, to a lady who is an acquintance of mine and who is only too happy to come out and help, and even happier to have an excuse not to stay to work late.
So there we are, the owner of the Mercedes, three security guards and Yours Truly. The guys are very nice and volunteer to help. We open the hood of my car, hook the cables to the battery, and . . . we can't find the battery in the Mercedes.
One of the guys suggests that the battery might be in the trunk. The lady argues that the battery in this particular model is not in the trunk. We spend the next 15-20 minutes (freezing rain still soaking us) looking for the elusive battery with the help of my flashlight. Alas, no dice. Apparently Mercedes cars work on magic or mushrooms or fairy dust because the silly thing is nowhere to be found.
We finally give up and someone volunteers his truck. I thank the lady in the Mercedes, who waves goodbye and takes off as we hook up the jumper cables to the truck and my car finally comes back to life.
By then it is almost 7 p.m. and I can barely feel my feet.
When I get home, after a grueling drive featuring crazy motorists, frozen overpasses and non-working traffic lights, I hug and kiss ballistabob and tell him that I've got no intention of living the house for the next month or two.
One thing is for sure. I have no intentions of purchasing a Mercedes Benz any time soon. Not only I am too cheap to spend the money on it, but I refuse to buy a car whose battery I can't find in a pinch.
Then again, I can always dream on one . . .
Preferably one that can fit an 8 feet spear . . .
I think I will keep on dreaming . . .