Thursday, February 11, 2010

Looking for the Lesson

The theme this week is driving. It's a good thing I like my new car because I'm spending an inordinate amount of time in it lately. And I don't mind, but I realized last night as I detailed my trips to Bubba just how much back-and-forth I've been engaged in the past few days.

Tuesday afternoon I picked Lola and one of her friends up from school. Her friend's mother was home sick and asked if I could run her daughter to choir practice at 4:30, just around the corner from Eve's practice. So the three of us left Lola's school and headed for Eve's, where I picked up three more passengers - Eve and our two neighbor kids that we carpool with. Five kids packed in like sardines chattering eagerly about Valentine's Day and mid-Winter Break. Two miles home to drop off the neighbors, get my two and Lola's friend in to the house for a quick pee and a snack before heading out to choir. Eve got dropped first, then back into the car for Lola and her friend to drive a quarter mile to the other choir practice. Now, we had just enough time to drive back to Eve's school gym where Lola's basketball practice started at 4:45. There until 5:30 when we got back in the car to drive back past our house to get Eve from choir practice by 6:00, stop off for a pre-made dinner from the grocery store, and home. Finally.

Today was shaping up to be another one of those days. The outline looked like this: take Eve to visit a private school at 8:00, back home to get the dog to the vet by 10:00. Needed to be in the city by noon for a doctor appointment and back to get Eve by 2:30, Lola from school by 3:15, home for a snack and back to choir practice by 4:30 for Eve. Thank goodness Bubba is home and he offered to pick Eve up at 6:00 and bring dinner home! But, as we all know, the best laid plans...

Lola coughed all night long and was in no shape to get to school today. So Bubba offered to stay home with her until I could get back from dropping Eve. I cancelled my appointment in the city, but had to keep the one for the dog. I dropped Eve off at 8:15 (whoops!) and headed away from the school, mentally leapfrogging my way through the rest of my day. Clearly, I was not paying enough attention to my route since I quickly found myself in the cloverleaf lane for the on ramp of the freeway heading the wrong direction. It was too late to turn around and I knew once I got on the freeway I was irrevocably headed into the city with no exits for at least three miles. Of course it happened to be rush hour, so while my trip west was fairly quick and easy, by the time I got turned around, the line for the on-ramp heading back eastward stretched for miles. Miles. Miles.

Furious with myself, I tried to keep breathing and combat the verbal abuse I was heaping upon myself. At least Lola was home safe with Bubba and the vet appointment wasn't for another hour, so I had plenty of time. Twenty minutes later, as I had moved just about one mile closer to the freeway, I was still trying to breathe.

I was alone in the car. That's a bonus, right? If only because it means I get to listen to NPR instead of Avril Lavigne.

Despite cancelling my appointment in the city, it appears I made it there anyway. That's funny, right?

Nobody had to know about this unless I told them. Probably nobody would ask, right?

In all, it took nearly an hour to get back to the site of my error. Another twenty minutes home. Lola had to come with me, but we made it to the vet on time. Just.

Eventually I calmed down and found a way to laugh about it. I was finally able to admit that it was a mistake easily made and it doesn't mean I'm stupid. But I've gotta say, I'm still left looking for the lesson here...


Deb Shucka said...

I think I'm hearing something about simplifying. What an exhausting schedule you have! No wonder you're taking wrong exits. Or maybe you could just blame NPR. Sending prayers for calm. Love you.

Carrie Wilson Link said...

"I quickly found myself in the cloverleaf lane for the on ramp of the freeway heading the wrong direction"

What a metaphor!

If it's any consolation, I do that kind of thing all the time.

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