A little over a week ago, when I drove to Northern Virginia to be with my family, whom I love, my car wanted to die. Okay, not die in the stop-working kind of die, but the if-I-had-the-capacity-to-make-decisions-I-would-stop-and-strangle-my-operator. When I arrived and had finished digging out a parking spot for my car with my brother, Joseph, he pointed out that I had something dragging under my car.
I did hear something on the way up, but I figured it was just the sound of chunks of ice hitting my car from the road. It wasn't, well it was, but it was also the sound of a giant piece of torn plastic scraping against the road. Awesome.
The cover of the bottom of my engine cracked and subsequently tore. Fortunately it wasn't affecting the engine, it just made an awful sound whenever I drove anywhere. I drove around like this for a week; it wasn't until Saturday that other people started to take notice.
Saturday was the first day that the weather was nice and people were out and the ice had mostly melted, and I could not stop at a stop sign or light without everyone in the general vicinity looking to see where that godawful noise was coming from. Some even knocked on my window to let me know, as if I was unaware. I assured them everything was fine, I just hadn't had a chance to cut it off. But one lady was insistent on having me pull over so that something could be done. She, while I was stopped at a red light, got down in front of my car and started fiddling with the plastic. Really. So, I put my hazard lights on and got out and tried to explain that I lived three blocks away, and that my engine was fine, and...her bus finally came.
I then drove all the way to DC with that flap sounding the entire way, and probably tearing more as I drove over ten inch thick slabs of ice down T Street. No one in DC said anything though, because like me originally, they probably just thought it was the sound of ice - or didn't care. This is something I appreciate about the people in DC.
After tiring of looking for parking, I parked a good ten blocks away from the Cat and made my way to Mousetrap. There, I ended up offering a ride to a chick who had Metro-ed in. But, the Metro closed early, so she would have had to take a cab out to Northern Virginia, and it was kind of on the way to my parent's house. (Note: I didn't tell my parents that I was coming.)
As we made our way down 14th Street, a cute guy knocked on my passenger's window. I thought he was going to tell me about my plastic situation, but he didn't he offered me twenty bucks to drive him and his brother to Glover Park because they were tired of trying for a cab. I looked to the girl, the very wide-eyed, nervous looking girl, then to the cute guy and said yes. Mind you, this girl, we don't really know each other. At all. And I'm pretty sure she thinks I'm insane. That's okay.
The brothers scooted in and we were on our way. And the window-knocking one, he was really cute, and he thought I was really cute, and he lives in Manhattan. Story of my life. When we got to their stop, they invited us in. I being the one flirting mercilessly was game, Girlie-friend was not. She said she was just going to call a cab, but I'm a woman of my word and exchanged numbers with Mr. Manhattan and took her home. Scraping the entire way.
The next afternoon, when I finally woke up, my parents complained about the plastic still hanging off my car. But I thought the idea of paying someone to cut it off was absurd, so I took a pair of hedge trimmers, put on my mom's Ugg-knock-offs (that used to be mine, and then I learned better, and then she kept them when I was going to give them to Goodwill), and squatted in my mini skirt to cut the thing off.