Miss Shannon (who is routinely referred to by both adults and children as Miss Shannon in the regular course of her life and enjoys referring to herself in the third person) generally considers herself to be tough. I’ve been married to Lucifer’s first cousin, lived to tell about it and he wasn’t even the worst one. After a while, tenacity becomes a way of life and you just embrace the feeling of clawing your way through. Bonus points if you never let them see you cry. If I have taught my kids anything at all, I hope it’s to not cry out loud. There are few things that make me flat out helpless like a turtle on its back. Sparking outlets. Marauding squirrels that trap me inside houses are on the list. Mice, dead or alive, and freaking car trouble.
My car began spewing smoke and sounding alarms yesterday morning because if it weren’t for bad luck, I wouldn’t have any at all. I was on Western Avenue, which means if my car wasn’t sick I’m about twenty minutes from home. Learn how to drive, that’s how long it ought to take from Western to Mechanicville. The speed limit is a suggestion, people. You should pretty much always be going faster than the posted number otherwise, just stay home or at least all the way to the right, please and thank you. Anyway, the smoke billowing out of my engine struck me as bad news so I parked the car. Cue hysterical ten minutes making phone calls to staff daycare appropriately and then calling Dozer so he can come rescue me. Initially, he tried to talk me through the difficulty. No thank you, Dozer. Miss Shannon remembers vividly the day she learned she was putting freaking power steering fluid in the brake line, multiple times, and admittedly at the advice of Lucifer’s cousin. I put gas in the car and that’s as far as it goes. Please know, if you hold a bottle of any type of engine fluid over an engine while looking confused at any service station on earth, a man will come and do it for you. They’ll also put air in your tires, fyi. No, playing dumb woman doesn’t trouble me even a little bit.
In my world, I was having a red, white or blue emergency. This is the sort of crisis that is grounds for my kids waking me up… Red: blood or fire. White: smoke or choking to death. Blue: po-po, an ambulance or someone is actually turning blue… Now, if I call AJ and say there is smoke coming from the hood and alarms going off, he knows to just give me an ETA. Granted, I have been his defacto wife for about twenty years and he knows when I am losing my shit. (Poor bastard has three wives: me, my sister and Miss Melissa. He has all the work of polygamy and none of the benefits, since he only gets conjugal visits with one of us. I make him an apple pie for Thanksgiving) I’m sure the mild hysteria in my voice when I said, you know you need to come here, right??? Clued our pal Dozer in that I am not qualified to deal with an automobile emergency so he jumped in his truck and rescued this damsel in distress. We parked my car safely and then he took me in and gave me breakfast.
Tonight I say… the fat lady has not yet sung. Dozer and I still need to go to DC and Luckenbach, Texas. We haven’t ridden Route 66 or been to Daytona. Hell, we still need to go to Jackson. Tonight, I thank God for unanswered prayers, cowboys that ride steel horses, and the stars and stripes. I’m grateful for Dozer, who spends half the day fixing a trailer so he can tow my car. All I can say is Good ride, cowboy, good ride…