Monday, September 14, 2009

Adventures in Carlining

School started a few weeks ago, and the ever exciting carline wait came with it.  The most hilarious, not so hilarious at the time, thing happened to me last Friday.  It was a one of those days that was showing a glimmer of hope that the summer heat and humidity would be releasing it's grip.  I had checked out a book from the library and thought carline would be a great place to start injecting some good read time back into my life.  Seriously, I had not read a book for fun since college!!

Still haven't finished it, but it's a pretty good book
So, I pulled up to my spot in carline, rolled down the windows and started reading.   The weather outside the car seemed perfect, but I must have been parked on an angle that was just not letting that amazing ocean breeze in.  I was trying so hard to fight off the temptation to sit in the car with the air running and sucking up gas, but darn it, it was hot!!   I thought I'd try an alternative first.  I'm sure most cars do this...when you turn the key a few clicks without turning the car on, the air blows for some circulation, but the car is not actually running. worked!

I read a chapter or so of my book, looked up and noticed the car in front of me had started to move forward.  I reached down to start the car and catch up before I caused a commotion behind me, and ut oh (in the words of my 14 month old)...all I got was a clicking noise.  Feeling a bit desperate, I tried again.  Oh no, I could feel the blood rushing straight to my face and that lump in my throat (I'll say it was embarrassment, but I think it was more on the lines of mortified)...I was stuck in carline with a DEAD BATTERY!!

The gap between me and the car in front of me was getting bigger and bigger and BIGGER.  I glanced in the rear view mirror and could see the look of annoyance coming from the car parked behind me.  As I slinked down in my seat, I think my brain started to turn off.  Apparently, when it comes to fight or flight, I'm more of a flight kinda' girl.  From the safety of my floorboard, I reached up, turned on the hazard lights, "hazard", that's funny...I felt like a serious "hazard", and waved the car behind me around. 

Panicked, of course (see the last post), I call on my rescue party, my poor husband...what in the world was he going to do for me from work?   I guess I deserved this...his advice, get this, put the car in neutral and push it out of the way!!!  Ok, a little background, in my former life, I found it necessary to buy the biggest SUV on the market at the time.  I think I got some sort of thrill with being bigger than most of the other normal cars on the road...I know.   Unfortunately, I'm so upside down in my giant gas guzzler, that I'm stuck with it.  Hint, present husband wanted me to get out of my miniature tank and PUSH IT! 

I was not seeing that happen AT ALL!  For one, I was still plotting my plan on how I was going to get out of the car to collect my child without anyone seeing my face, so even if I was feeling like Hercules, that killed that idea.  For two, my position in carline made it impossible for me to move the car in any direction except backwards.  Picture this, I was parked just on the corner of the entrance to the parking lot.  Once you pull into the parking lot, carline goes 100% single file blocked in on one side by a fence and the other by a curb.  I guess in the midst of my disaster, I could be thankful that I hadn't been parked just a few feet forward where nobody could get around...that embarrassment would have been grounds for changing schools!

Somehow, I mustered up the guts to get out of the car and get my child.  My plan, we were walking home.  I was leaving my car right where it was, and I was walking home.  Really, our house is not that far from school.  Luckily, for my car, the Sheriff that was acting as crossing guard wasn't so keen on the idea of my car staying in the middle of carline.  Even though I was in a spot where my fellow carliners could get around me, they were having to wait for a break in the traffic coming out of the parking lot in order to use the outgoing lane to get around me and in.  Apparently, the chaos had caught his attention and over he came with his jumper cables to save the day.  Thank God, because I didn't have a stroller and carrying my 30 lb one year old all the way home was not my idea of fun...but, it did give me an idea...

The moral of my story...after thinking about it, walking to and from school on my preschooler's off days was not so bad of an idea (with a stroller, of course).  Think of all the gas/carbon emissions/$$ I could be saving, AND I would get some exercise which is always a positive side effect!!  Wonder why it took a dead battery for me to figure that one out :)? 


  1. I had to think of you and giggle a little last week when a car was stuck in our carline, I would have helped, but someone already was.

  2. That should be the 2nd moral of my story...stop to help!! I was amazed at how many people just drove by looking at me like I had 80 heads and never asked to see if I needed help!!!