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Monday, June 5, 2000

Boy am I stupid.

And lucky.

Somehow the two go hand in hand. Herb and Ida like to play their little jokes on me, but they were watching out for me today, after their own twisted fashion.

I try to run my errands at the same time each morning, and I try to follow a routine. Since I moved, part of my routine has included placing my Daytimer carefully on the trunk of the car while I use both hands to open the reluctant garage door from the inside. Then I conscientiously pick up the Daytimer and place it in the door compartment while I back out. I would never be so careless that I'd leave it on top of the trunk. And even if I did, I'd notice it before I pulled out of the driveway and into the road.


Wouldn't I?

Yeah, right.

Imagine my chagrin when I arrived at the post office and reached to my left for the bills that had to be mailed today. When I came up with nothing but air, I checked the trunk, inside and out, but I guess I knew right away what I'd done. At that point, I could only guess the consequences.

in the road

Driving back home at slightly above the posted limit, and grasping blindly at any straw I could find, I thanked the Golds that it wasn't raining. I checked the roadway for evidence, but I didn't expect to find any until I got to my own driveway. And there, nestled on the roadway like a dead peacock (one can only hope), was my Daytimer. Nowhere to be seen were the envelopes I needed to mail. More menacingly, there was no sign of the four checks (including my own paycheck) that I'd planned to deposit at the bank on the same trip.


After pulling the car off the road and into the drive (and after pausing for an impromptu photo shoot), I started poking through the drainage ditch alongside the road. Up on the pavement, down into the brush, scrambling on the gravel shoulder, it was a frightening half hour before I saw the first scrap of paper that turned out to be one of the missing checks. (Okay, it was probably fifteen seconds, but it seemed like a half hour.)

It actually was a half hour of walking up and down the road, in and out of the ditch, on both sides, before I found everything there was to find. I let myself into the house to take inventory and was amazed to discover that I'd found every single piece of paper that I'd managed to strew along the road. Every check, every bill. How could this be? My luck is never that good.

And the whole time, I didn't think about my back even once!

I rushed off to the bank, clutching the checks the whole way. It was like a stay of execution, and I was determined to make the most of my reprieve. What I should have done, I guess, was crawl back into bed, because the day was not going to get better.

The morning had started with such promise. I made that list I talked about, the one that was going to tell me exactly what I have to do between now and Friday. And it was far less intimidating in reality than it was in the dark shadows of my ominous premonitions.

And then, late this afternoon, I had one of my regular meltdowns. You can't exactly set a clock by them, but you might be able to devise a calendar.

I'm not ready to go through it all again, and the details aren't important anyway, but it was the usual — all of a sudden, more work than I could handle, all of it crucial to the fate of humanity, and all of it needing to be done at once. Working on little sleep and a stressful morning, I didn't deal well with the situation. Much gnashing of teeth. I whined mercilessly to anyone who dared call me on the phone (including the Boss). My back, after a day of relative comfort, began hurting, along with the rest of my weary, dreary body.

Okay, that's enough of that. With some help, I waded my way through the swamp of despair. I'll try to maintain tranquility through the rest of the week, while working diligently to get to the bottom of that list (and deal with everything else that comes up). Whatever happens, I'm out of here Saturday morning. I won't be checking in with the Boss while I'm gone, and I'll try not to think about what awaits when I return.

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