SurrealI wanted to come home yesterday and write a blog about my terrible day but a) I just couldn't seem to talk about it, b) I figured it would be more rant and whine than worth reading, c) in the scope of the "my worse day ever" it really didn't hit very high. It just seemed bad at the time.
It was a hot day. Right there we all know that isn't good for me. We were supposed to hit 90 before the day was out. I didn't think it was too bad when I exited the office. There was a brisk 15MPH breeze that made it seem less hot and our heat is a dry heat--so not as miserable as the humid type. I grabbed an interim bus to save the long hot walk to my bus stop and it had AC so that helped a bit. Of course we all know going into AC and then back out makes it seem warmer outside. I get to my bus stop and wait and wait. I get there 20 mins. early but the buses only run every 30 mins. that early in the afternoon so you need enough time to walk there and will usually be early or late and wait. Name of the game.
The rest of the riders gradually showed up and the breeze was losing its power after 20 minutes in the heat but at least I was in the shade of a building and knew the bus would be there soon. Our bus never showed--who knows why. So, now, another 20 mins. of standing in near 90s and getting crankier by the minute. But, I kept trying to keep it in perspective. In the big scheme of life--a missed bus and a hot afternoon--just small matters. The next bus finally showed but of course it was crowded since we now have 2 busloads of people on one bus. Amazingly this one was air-conditioned. Amazing in the fact our bus line never gets one except in the dead of winter. The day it is 90--we get the oldest buses in the line and swelter but at least our ride is relatively fast. I felt some recovery.
I noticed as we got closer to the park & ride that it seemed to get hotter and hotter in the bus. Figured it was the number of people vs. the ability of the AC but then realized I could hear a constant buzzing in the background--even through my ear buds. Never a good sound on a bus. Usually means a problem. Sure enough the bus was overheating. We (thankfully) made it to the first smaller parking lot but the driver said the bus would have to cool down and it would be a while. I sat there stunned. What are the odds you get two problem buses in one afternoon?? I do think our bus company walks a fine line on maintenance and the economy has made that even worse--it isn't uncommon to have problem buses because a lot of the fleet is old and ill-cared for at times. So, sit in a bus quickly turning into a bunsen burner or get out and walk down to the main park and ride parking lot. Not a long walk but a circuitous route since you can't just cross the street but have to go way up and cross the wrong way, then back, then back again to your side. Traffic, you know.
I made it up through the parking lot and just wanted to dig a hole like a dog and find some cool earth to take the heat away. I looked up and spied a local chain restaurant, Village Inn. Roughly the quality and type of a Denny's. Not the healthiest fare but decent food and a less expensive meal. Very popular with seniors. I thought "ice water and someone to fix me dinner--SOLD!" I went into their deliciously cool establishment and asked them to feed a hot and cranky person. I got a nice sandwich and some onion rings. I have been craving some onion rings and thought that would cheer me up a bit. They were delicious and hit the spot. The carafe of ice water didn't hurt either. I kept looking out the window at the twisted route to the parking lot and my car--shining and hot. I was tempted to ask them if I could stay there until dark but then remembered it was Wednesday.
With trepidation I looked at my hair appointment and saw it was 7/1 - 4:30 PM. I looked up at the clock. 4:20. Would this day never work out right??? I called Marie and asked if she wanted to leave, wait for me another 20 mins. or just move the appointment. I figured she'd go for the move but she was willing to wait. So, I dragged myself out of my comfortable and cool booth, paid my bill, left a hefty tip for my savior from misery, my waiter, and took off for the car. Of course I had to wait in the baking sun at each crossing since the traffic had all the advantages. Finally made it to the car--luckily (thanks to my tree) placed in some shade and the AC on max to get me cooled down on the stretch to the hair salon.
You know how it is? You need to get somewhere quickly. So, you hit every red light and seem to find every slow driver on the planet. I finally made it about 15 mins. late, somewhat cooled off from the arctic blast in the car but not much less cranky. I really wanted to go home--not deal with another trip and more people. Ask Carol, I'm not socially inclined when I'm hot. I just want to get cool and be left alone. Marie is the model of patience and quickly prepped me for a hair wash and the salon was gratefully cool as well. Inevitably we chatted and I relaxed and my hair did feel better squeaky clean and shortened. I felt badly that I hadn't brought her her usual treat. Forgetting the day and the mess with the buses fixed that.
I did tell her I would bring her a small berry trifle tomorrow morning. She was so nice to wait and help me cool down--I figured that would be nice for her 4th. I hesitated to go to Whole Foods on the way home. My luck wasn't running good for the day but things were looking better. I did have a nice shopping trip to Whole Foods but sadly they had no Oregon berries so I have to go find some this AM before the heat of the day cooks them for me. I started work early to take a quick trip to a produce stand down the street and I should be set to make trifle for Marie for tomorrow.
As originally stated--in the grand scheme of things, it wasn't that horrible a day but when I was living it, it wasn't a fun one. At least after a good night's sleep and cool-down, I can state it was only surreal and not hellish. :) Tri-Met--you mostly do right by me and the buses get me there and mostly on time but why do you always have all of the mechanical problems when it is 90+???