Wednesday, July 12, 2006

no good. terrible.very bad.

monday was such a good day. first off, i didn't have to work. i slept in and watched three movies (even though you were right gg, 'Saturday Night Fever' was depressing). most importantly, i made a cameo at my old dance class with cc -- i hadn't been able to attend in almost a year -- and you know it was that great and i am that out of shape because two days later i'm still hobbling around like someone who's lived for a century.

when i got home, i was so wired from the adrenaline of floorwork that i couldn't sleep until 7:30 in the morning. maybe if i had known then that it was going to be the beginning of what alexander could describe in a few choice adjectives, i wouldn't have gone to sleep at all.

at about 9 a.m. tuesday, my brother (who is home on college break but taking summer classes) was screaming for me to help him. a vein near his left shin had burst and he'd soaked through an entire towel before he could wrangle a bandage on there tight enough to hold it back. of course i was in so deep an exhaustion that i didn't even hear him. finally he limped into my room to tell me to make sure the blood and bleach were completely washed out of the bathtub and went to class.

then, on my way to work, i tuned into newsradio to hear that some sort of terrorist group bombed seven train stops in Mumbai at rush hour. two of which are the stops for some of my relatives. i called my dad, who was trying to get a hold of his people but because there was such chaos he couldn't get through.

after i got to work, i tried calling my mother to ask about the family, and got no answer. however, she called me shortly thereafter from the emergency room, where she had to rush my brother after she got home from work. it seems when she went to check his bandage, the blood started gushing out -- this is actually what she said, as she showed me her pinkie finger to demonstrate the thickness of the stream-- "like a watergun" and she was unable to stop it. my mother is a nurse.

then my father calls to say that his sister had gotten off at the platform in Bandra on the train directly before the one that blew up. if she had been running late, she would have been in the compartment with the bomb. at that point, the death toll was at 160 people and is now at more than 200.

someone comes in the office to say that right here in Chicago, the Blue Line 'L' train derailed, causing a fire and the subway to fill with smoke. after the news from the motherland, people were freaking out. everyone was safe, but shaken up. some 150 taken to hospitals for smoke inhalation. things got way behind at work because everyone was standing around the tv to find out what happened.

on my way home, i had made it about 12 miles onto the highway when the steering wheel and the rest of the vehicle began to shake violently, accompanied by a rubbery, flapping noise that i had never heard before. it became hard to steer, but i made it to the shoulder where i found i had blown a tire. no big deal; i knew how to change a flat even though i had never had to actually do it before. when i got the car years ago, my father walked me through the process. no sweat. however, double semi tractor trailers rattling by at 85 mph make it tricky to concentrate. and because i could barely reach over to fasten the seatbelt without 14 sore muscles whining in protest, one can only imagine how fun it was to empty the trunk and remove the spare tire.

it was 12:30 a.m. there weren't any streetlights where i had stopped. to keep pretenses light, i called H with a preview of the ridiculous story i'd tell at dinner parties of my pathetic attempts to change a flat when i could barely tie my shoes. for good measure i threw in my location and key phone numbers in case the line went dead and my body was found dismembered and buried in a shallow grave in some nameless forest preserve in the suburbs. but i was more scared of getting clipped by a drunk driver or sleepy trucker.

it was all good; i was already practicing how i'd nonchalantly announce to my father, who despite trying to teach me these things doesn't really believe i can do them (secretly hopes i can't) without his assistance. after several minutes i realized the jack was not coming out of its cute little compartment. i didn't have a secret decoder ring, magic key or password. nothing was working. H was trying to explain that there was something to twist, pull, unfasten or unlock, but it just wasn't happening. mostly because i was blocking what little trunk light i had by holding up the carpeting to get to the compartment. it was looking like i'd have to get dear old daddy out of bed after all.

but my pops could sleep. some kindhearted soul must have seen my pathetic ass struggling and didn't want to read about some girl chopped to bits and buried in a forest preserve because they called the highway help guy. he pulled up, changed the flat and said with a nod, 'just be safe' when i asked him if i owed him anything. i also asked him what the secret was to removing my own car jack and he just laughed. i said 'they're supposed to be easy to use.' and he said, 'yeah, if you manage to get them out.'

when i finally got home, my brother was up to make sure i was ok, with his crutches leaning against the couch. he's going to have to have surgery on the leg. he convinced me to watch 'The Longest Yard,' which i didn't find to be terribly entertaining. i was especially disappointed in Chris Rock.

but maybe i was just in a bad mood.

9 comments:

Ale said...

nice one cadiz! and when i ask you "so whats up?" all i got was ... "ehhh nothin much..you know" !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

OMGOOODNESS!!!!!!!!! R U SERIOUSSSS?????? its just incredible how bad news just have to all happen together.

i turned on the news today to see anything about the bombing but of course i dont have cable and the "regular" news channels apparently didnt get the memo years ago that its now mumbai and not bombay so they prob cant find it on the map so no mention of the bombings-- but fear not- i HEARD a whole bunch of other bad crap that's going on!

Lia said...

Somehow I think you deserve to be in a bad mood. And I thought I had a rotten day. This is beyond "rotten", though. Totally different league. I hope things start looking up. If not, there are always girly, feel-good movies.

Anonymous said...

Seems like a bad day until you realize that everyone and everything is OK when there was a real chance of tragedy on the train or on the road.

Modern Viking said...

Changing a tire on the side of the highway is always more difficult than it should be. Especially after a day like that...

I hope all your family is safe. Best wishes for your bro.

Popeye said...

You're in Chicago, too? How did I miss this?

That really does sound like an absolutely awful, terrible, no good day. Thinking good thoughts about your family.

Radioactive Jam said...

You know it's a for-real bad day when there's at least two or three parts of it where most likely you *won't* look back someday and laugh.

I mean, seriously. What are the chances you'll say, "yeah I can laugh about that day now, especially 'The Longest Yard'." Not going to happen.

What if we had something like a "spare day" which we could use to replace a particularly bad one. That'd be cool, right? I can see it now: high hopes and a non-removable jack. No thanks.

(seems like the family principals will be okay though; that much is good)

Ale said...

dude i see your profile pic!!!! cooool

Guyana-Gyal said...

This was definitely THE MOST TERRIBLE day I've ever read or heard about. Ever. Everything in one.

I'm glad your family is okay. And you are too.

cadiz12 said...

thanks, guys. it seemed like a few very close calls and i am very thankful that nothing truly bad really happened. now i just hope i've run through the bad karma and look forward to any stroke of luck i may have coming my way.