Other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play?


Yesterday was a bit of a drag. Madalyn was supposed to have her teeth filled at 3 p.m. — finally — but when we got to the dentist she was crying a little and everyone there basically freaked out and they wouldn’t see her, pawning us off instead to the pediatric dentist in town, who will sedate her. I was very upset, one, because they didn’t even TRY to put her in the chair and get the gas going and see what happened, and she would’ve been fine if they’d done that. It’s not like she was hysterical or violent; she was just doing a low-level snuffling because she was nervous. And, two, this has been dragging on for several months due to having to change dentists, appointments taking a long time to be secured, etc. We have had this hanging over our heads for quite a while and I thought finally we were going to get it over with — only to have it put off even longer. Then a few hours later Robert gets a call from the guy he splits the legal work with up in the panhandle. The guy had a family crisis and begged Robert to go up there today in his place. The only problem? Today was the day of the big ultrasound. So I cancelled it and will move it to next week……though missing the appointment turned out to be inevitable,as you’ll soon see.
Since I already had after-school childcare lined up I decided to go ahead and go to my midwife appointment in the city and then let the sitter take the kids as planned so I could do some Christmas shopping before I came home. The prospect of a good meal and leisurely shopping — surely it would turn out to be a day far superior to the one we had yesterday, right?
Ha dihahahahahaha.
I was zipping along the highway about three miles outside of Norman when I ran over an object that appeared to be shaped like a piece of lumber, but was black. I didn’t see it in time to switch lanes to avoid it. It bounced squarely up under the van with a thunk. I was annoyed but didn’t think much more about it.
I got off the freeway a couple minutes later, in Norman, to get a chicken sandwich at Chick-Fil-A before continuing on to the city. About thirty seconds after I exited it dawned on me that I was smelling gasoline. Now, it didn’t take a bloody rocket scientist to figure out that this was Not a Good Thing. But I clung to the thin hope that perhaps there had been some sort of spill at one of the gas stations and that I was simply passing the smell, which would then abate as I got further away.
Fat chance.
I pulled into a parking spot at the mall and the smell got stronger. Now, at this point I’m wishing I didn’t have to get out of the van and look, but couldn’t figure out a way to make that happen. So I got out. And then wanted to climb back in and lie down with my head under the backseat. Gasoline was pouring in a river out from under the vehicle. This was just so bad, on so many levels, and it took me a moment to get my head together and figure out who to call. I finally settled on 911. They sent the Norman Fire Department, who spent the next hour-and-a-half cleaning up so it would be safe to tow.
Let me not forget to mention, I had three-quarters of a tank of gas in the beast at the time. I had just pumped $45 into it and was now watching it all drain merrily away down the mall parking lot. 80% of the time I am driving around with a quarter of a tank or less but the time my gas tank is punctured it’s almost full. Ah, irony. You’re a cruel, cruel mistress.
Next stop: the local Dodge dealership. The first order of business was for them to assess the damage. Well, naturally, it being me we’re talking about and, by association, Robert, we couldn’t possibly receive anything but the worst possible diagnosis. The gas tank? It is destroyed. I believe the word “smithereens” was used at one point. It will take 3-4 days for the new tank to even arrive and then it will be installed, to the tune of more than $1100. The service guy assured me that just about every insurance policy covers things like this so we are off first thing in the a.m. to talk to our agent and hopefully at least part of this will be paid for by them. This is assuming my policy is current, by the way, for which there is never any guarantee.
I got a rental car in order to get myself home, since Robert is in the panhandle. I did go do a bit of shopping after that but my heart just wasn’t in it. Things like this tend to put a damper on the spirits of even the most rabid consumer.


About msmaryb

I'm a native Californian who lives in Oklahoma. I'm a full-time student, pursuing a Bachelors in Anthropology, following which I hope to attain a Masters in Archaeology. I have three kids, one husband, no pets, and a lot of friends - most of whom live inside my computer. I love to read, write, watch tv (shut up, we can't all be brain surgeons), shop, and travel. I'm trying to set foot in all 50 states before I die. I have 38, so far. I love the Beatles and Maroon 5, and if you think those two things are incongruous, well, they are. But that's me. When I love something, I love it 100%. I don't do anything halfway. I want to know everything there is to know, so I'm trying to cram as much into my brain as I can in the short amount of time I'm allotted in this dimension.

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