Tuesday, September 25, 2012

And God Laughed

They say that if you want to hear God laugh, tell him/her your plans.

I had a plan.  It was a good one.

See, the older I get, the more light/dazzle sensitive my eyes are getting which makes driving on the highway in the dark very uncomfortable.  So with darkness drawing in earlier and earlier I decided that I would not drive all the way home in one day.  Instead I would leave my friend's at a respectable hour (any earlier than 9 am and you are part of the rush hour) and drive until it was dusk, which would get me to around Williams Lake, where upon I would stop and spend the night.  The next day (that would be tomorrow) I would arise, not terribly early, and have an easy 4 hour or so drive home.

Can you hear the chuckling now?

I left my friend's house at about 5 minutes to 9, entered the highway at a few minutes after 9 am and noticed right away that the traffic was very heavy.  But it was after 9 am and it should start easing soon, right?

Um, not so much.

The traffic stayed heavy and got thicker the closer to Seattle I got eventually becoming bumper to bumper, barely moving.  Ah well, nothing to do but go on.

In the meantime I had a Leonard Cohen cd in the cd player and the nice smooth melodies kept me calm.  Since I'm alone in the van I can also sing along if the spirit moves me.

With the traffic so heavy I let it continue to play over again as I didn't want to risk trying to change it.  I like Leonard Cohen, after all.

It wasn't until well after Everett and about 2 and a half times through the cd before traffic thinned enough that I felt I could carefully change the cd.  Hmm.  That's odd.  It didn't turn off when I pressed the off button.  If you don't turn it off the radio will come on when you eject the cd until you get another one into it and I don't like the blaring static noise.  Push the button again.  Several times in quick succession.  Nothing.

Well, what's up with that?

Try the eject button.  Nope.  Volume?  Nope.  Huh.

Okay, it's good old Leonard until I stop for lunch and turn the engine off.

Lunch time and a quick stop at Mount Vernon.  Turn the ignition off and.....Leonard is still singing?  How can that be?

Punch more buttons, getting desperate.  (Need to pee!)

Ok, leave it play and go into the restaurant.  It won't harm the battery too much to leave it for a bit.

Come back out, Leonard isn't singing but the light is still on.  Puzzle over why this is happening and what I can do about it.  Oh geez!  Here's Leonard again.  Punch the off button.  Several times.  Hit the mute button.  Still nothing.  Agh!  I have to cross the border in a while - I always shut the cd off to talk to the customs agent.  What am I going to do????  I'd turned the volume up before I left the driveway to highway volume - it's too high for trying to talk to someone.

Just before the border I stop and turn the van off hoping Leonard will go to sleep again, at least until I cross the border.  Thirty minutes later, Leonard is still crooning with no stop in sight.  Resigned I start the motor and head for the gate.

When it is my turn, LC is singing a very soft song - I can talk to the agent without too much difficulty.  She lets me cross without any hassle.  Phew!

But in reality I'm beginning to see that I am not going to be able to stay overnight somewhere.  I don't want to mess around pulling fuses (if I even had something that would pull them out) because I'm not sure what all else is on the same fuse.  I can't leave the cd player run all night - the battery might run down.

I listen to LC croon, over and over and over again while God laughs.  13 hours worth of crooning and laughing.

I drive home.  All the way.  The last 3 hours in the dark.

And Leonard?  You know I like you but I trust you'll understand why I won't be playing you for a while.  A good long while.....


Rhonda from Baddeck said...

Oh, my goodness. I'm sorry, but I'm chuckling at this. It's a good thing you (used to) like Leonard Cohen! Did Doug figure out how to make him stop singing?

Anonymous said...

Yes, I believe there was chuckling....sorry you had such a long drive. Whatever was the problem, was the cd stuck somehow in player?

Laura Fry said...

Doug managed to pull the fuse to make LC go to sleep. He'll contact the dealer today. I don't think the cd was the problem - the buttons would have still worked - and they didn't.

Sandra Rude said...

Oh, dear. Your van is probably about the same vintage as mine (2000 model year) and I am dreading the inevitable event when things start failing... Hope it's an easy fix!

Laura Fry said...

My van is only 4 months old - we just got it this spring. It will go into the shop next Tuesday (first 'free' day I had) and hope they can figure it out. Just driving around town this morning I missed my music! :)

trish said...

A great story - thanks so much for the laugh!!.....but sorry you had to go through that:)

margery said...

Just imagine if you'd been weaving instead of driving. I think that would have had a bad effect on my cloth! What a funny story!

Klara said...

The van's manual (which should be in the glove box) should list the fuses and which is connected to what. That's how I managed to stop the horn from blowing continually last year...

Anonymous said...

Belatedly catching up on the blog posts I missed while I was travelling and, I'm afraid, enjoying a giggle at your (and Leonard's) expense! The good thing about blogging is that the most awkward situations do tend to make the best stories - it's just holding on to that thought at the time that can be challenging...