{ Thursday, November 02, 2006 }

Adventures in Parking.

They're powerwashing our parking garage today and tomorrow. This evening, I didn't get home until after eight. Which meant there were no spots in the two nearest parking lots.

Being a reasonable person, I know that if I parked in one of the lots further away I would: forget that I had to go on a great long hike to get to my car in the morning and put on three inch heels and then begin my day with pained feet; forget entirely where I parked and spend ten minutes wandering around trying to find my car; fail to budget that extra walking time in the morning and end up being late for work.

I know, like, "mary ann was late for work" was ever an abnormal occurence. But! I have worked at the new job for more than a month now and I have [knock on wood] been on time every single day except for the morning when I talked to my mom for the first time after finding out she has cancer. That day I was half an hour late, but I called ahead and got permission.

So, to keep my streak alive and my feet happy, I had to parallel park. Now, I'm not so hot at the perpendicular park (see also: the huge dent in my car where I ran into my own garage door. People never seem to understand how it was that I hit the doorway and then couldn't figure out how to undo that without making it so much worse.)

Parallel parking. I'm not sure I've ever tried that in this car. I'm pretty sure I've never even executed a proper three-point turn in this car. I know I try to avoid using reverse as much as possible. I'm not good at it.

You should all know that my car is only slightly larger than a breadbox. I ought to be able to park it.

I found a good spot and then attempted seven times to park in it while facing the right direction. I couldn't remember which way I had to turn the wheel to make the car go the way I wanted or even which angle the car needed to be travelling in and it was bad. It was bad.

Then I tried it from the wrong direction, figuring that at my childhood home we parked on the wrong side of the street and so maybe I would be better at it that way since I did do some of that as a teenager. (Mom would only let me park in the driveway if I backed in. I did an awfully lot of damage to my bumpers, the muffler, the retaining wall, the yard and the neighbors' garden trying that.) I got halfway in there. My car did fit. But no luck. After five more tries, I gave up on that spot.

Without hitting either car! I got out of there and tried again to find another spot. I found one on an end. A car on one side and a curb on the other. This was less stressful. Eventually, I got the car in there.

It's probably an entire foot from the curb, but it's a narrow car in a spot that no one's going to drive past so I feel okay about it.

posted by mary ann 9:37 PM