Today was a snowy, quiet day. I made up a couple of minor errands just to get out of the house. You know, return a Blockbuster movie, mail the rent check....Ooops, is it March already!!!??
One of my inspirations to get moving this afternoon (hey, I didn't say anything about bright-eyed and bushy tailed. You presumed that!) was that I typically clean off not only my Pathfinder, but the ancient, little green vehicle of sorts that belongs to my 84-year-old next door neighbor, Gloria.
I've mentioned Gloria before. She's the woman for whom I open toilet cleaners and roasted red pepper jars; I "fix" her answering machine (that is erase the messages after I've instructed her about 122 other previous times how to do the same); I take her garbage out.
So, you know, me and Glo are tight.
And I take this car-cleaning thing seriously, even though she's told me her family doesn't want her driving. Sometimes she's just GOTTA get somewhere. Hey man, she's an 84-year-old on the go! (She gave me 5 dollars during the first snowstorm. I didn't want to take the money so I bought that swill-wine and earned a nickel extra for when I need 2 minutes in a parking meter. The next time it snowed, I didn't go out that day, and she left a note on the door "Sorry you didn't clean my car today." So that's what we're dealing with here)
So I put on my winter layers, hat, gloves, goofy ski hat that makes my head 178 degrees. I trudge down the stairs, grab the shovel and walk outsi.......
What the? Who the? Dude....Someone cleaned her car!
Gloria is cheating on me!
So I dug out my Pathfinder, half brooding and half wondering who could be more benevolent than me!? Impossible! Whoever it was is an early bird, eagerly getting out before 3:30 p.m.!
I did discover that the new saint in town failed to shovel a path to Gloria's driver's side, which I not only happily did, I cleared a path on the passenger side too! Take that rookie!
So as I'm about to begin my trip to Blockbuster, my downstairs neighbor comes out with his own shovel and nods to me. I nod back, expecting that to be end of it. He says to me "I bailed you out this time, I took care of Gloria's car."
Newman! He's the guy! I actually kinda like him. And decide to drop my grudge. For now.
I said "You didn't have to do that. I told her I'd take care of it."
"Nice of you," I added.
"She gave me 10 bucks."
Bad economy and Gloria's upping the ante. Interesting. She drives a hard bargain that Glo.
I got over it in a hurry. I parked outside of Blockbuster, used my nickel for 2 minutes at the meter while I retured the movie. When I returned home, Gloria's garbage was outside my door.
The true test. The wasted tissues, empty tuna cans (or is that cat food), and empty Parmalat boxes of an admiring 84-year-old. Come on rook, step up. This is what it's all about. We can all be the Shovel For Hire, but let's see what you got on garbage day!
Make sure my foyer doesn't smell like elderly refuse tomorrow. Be sure to pick that up tomorrow by 2 p.m. I have an early day.