Wednesday, February 8, 2017
AUTO SENIOR MOMENTS
Parking Lot, Greensboro, NC
I used to enjoy listening to my older friends and relatives relate their humorous senior moments. It happens to all of us eventually and it can certainly be tragic for some, but if we can laugh at these moments while we still can, it takes the sting out of those golden years.
Within the past few years I’ve experienced a few of these moments myself that revolved around the possibility of my vehicle being carjacked! I like the old story of the senior couple that drove to the shopping center one day. The husband was complaining all the way there that he didn’t like to go shopping, so the wife just told him to drop her off and pick her up in an hour. Forty-five minutes later she finished shopping and proceeded to walk to the location where she usually parked her car. As she searched for her keys, she realized that she must have left them in the ignition again! When it became obvious that the car was missing, she called 911 on her cell phone and reported her car stolen. She waited for a while hoping for a miracle and then reluctantly called her husband who had repeatedly admonished her for leaving the keys in the car. When he finally answered, she hesitantly blurted out that her car had been stolen! “Are you kidding me?”, he barked, “I dropped you off!” Embarrassed, she replied, “Well come and get me then.” He retorted, “I will, as soon as I convince this police officer that I didn’t steal your damn car!”
I finally returned from a grueling five-day business trip on a delayed winter flight and slowly dragged my luggage down to the terminal’s parking garage. During those Road Warrior days, I always tried to park in the same location so that I could walk directly to my car on a late Friday night. That was one of the conveniences of the KC airport that has three identical terminals accommodating local travelers. As I approached the parking spot my heart raced to notice that my car was missing! My groggy brain processed all this and my first inclination was to call security and report that my car was stolen! Then the brain fog slowly lifted as I realized that I had transferred to another airline to outsmart the weather and all the cancelled flights. That airline was in one of the other duplicate terminals! I boarded a transfer bus and drove home.
A few years later and a few brain cells shorter, I pulled into the parking lot of a local restaurant with out-of-town guests late in the evening. We luckily found one of the last parking spaces and got all the doors unlocked and everyone exited out of the tight spot. As we were enjoying a nice bottle of Merlot with dinner, the manager stopped by our table and asked if we were driving a Buick? Perhaps my thinning white hair prompted the question, but we responded that we were not. In passing, she remarked that someone would possibly be out of gas when they returned since the engine was running with the keys in the car. We laughed and laughed. And only until we returned to the parking lot did we discover that my car was still quietly running!
Finally, I recently made the decision to buy a larger smart TV for my man cave to watch sports events including the impending Super Bowl. So, I did my Internet research and settled on a deal at Costco. I arranged for a friend with a pickup to meet me outside the store to cart it home. We made the connection and decided to have lunch at a nearby Panera. The conversation turned to the new Calloway Epic driver, so we made our way across the vast parking lot to Golf Galaxy for a test drive. By this time, it was getting late but we finally got the new TV installed. As I emerged into my garage the next morning, I was surprised to find that I must have left my car in the driveway overnight as I have done on occasion. But when I opened the garage door, it was missing from my driveway as well! My immediate reaction was that my car had been stolen! And then I realized that we had left it in the Costco parking lot all night.
Welcome to the Golden Years!