You know what else I was doing besides losing respect for people and hitting the unfriend button? I was stopping traffic...literally.
It's been well documented that I tend to live on the edge when it comes to matters of the gas tank and the low fuel light. When I see the little orange (why is it orange? why can't it be pink? maybe i'd pay more attention if it were!) I think "I need to get gas sometime today". While I realize that
Yes, in addition to being a fueling expert I am an artist. Don't be jealous.
As you can see by my exceptional diagram, this was an unfortunate place to run out of gas. While it's not a main road with tons of traffic, it is still pretty heavily traveled. I thought since I was kind of at the top of the hill that if I put it in neutral and rocked back and forth really hard I could get it to roll down and could steer it over to the side a bit. Are you envisioning this right now? Because as ridiculous as it looks in your head right now? That's how it looked in real life x 100. It wasn't long before there was a line of cars stopped because there was no way to pass on one side and on the other was a very narrow passage way and a steep inclined ditch right off the road. I called GI Joe first to find out his location, he was in his office 45 minutes away so I called AAA. I got out of the car because I didn't want people to think I was just parked in the middle of the road hanging out and figured if I was out, standing on the road NEXT to my car talking on my phone, people would figure out that I was a damsel in distress and not yell at me too much. I had a car full of men in hard hats that dared go around my car on the narrow side offer me a ride to the gas station to get gas and became very insistent when I politely declined because HELLO STRANGER DANGER. I was still on the phone with AAA because while they may be lifesavers they weren't exactly Johnny on the Spot. I had to walk down to the bottom of the hill to see the street sign so I could tell AAA the name of the road I was on and the car full of men stopped me again and asked if I wanted a ride. I told them no, I just needed to walk down and find out the street name. They took off at warp speed to drive down to the bottom of the hill and then reversed back up to me to tell me. So while I didn't get in the car with them to be kidnapped and dismembered they did save me a walk down the road. I walked back up the hill to the PMObile as an old man on a motorcycle pulled up and started kind of yelling at me, "WHAT ARE YOU DOING?!? YOU CAN'T PARK HERE! THIS IS DANGEROUS!" You don't know how hard I had to bite my tongue to refrain from saying, "Whaaaat, I can't?!? But I was tired and thought this looked like a rest area!" I was still on the phone to AAA but was trying to explain to the grumpy old man that I had run out of gas. By then another guy that didn't want to brave going out around me had gotten out and was standing with the old man. I told grumpy old man that I had tried putting in neutral to roll it down the hill to the side but it hadn't worked. Then he told me, "Well we have to get it moved you're gonna kill 100 people leaving it here." Oh really, only 100? I was really hoping for 200 AT LEAST. He told me to turn the wheel to the right and apparently I didn't do it right because no lie, he YELLED AT ME, "JUST GET OUT AND I'LL DO IT!" Oh uh uh. First I run out of gas in the middle of the road, nearly abducted by the Village People, and now old man Turbo is YELLING AT ME. It was almost more than I could bear but I got out and let him take over. Truth be told I just needed to WALK AWAY. He steered while the other guy pushed and they did manage to get it to the side of the road.
The after picture..
I thanked them and got back in vehicle STILL ON THE PHONE WITH AAA when finally they told me they'd have someone out within 50 minutes. OH and did I mention that I had drank approximately 96 ounces of water throughout the day so you know what that means, i needed FACILITIES. I weighed my options which were a) walk up the driveway to the house that I believed the grumpy old man to live in b) the ditch and c) hold it. I opted for c because even though I was stranded on the side of the road I was still trying to salvage my dignity. I was sitting in my car patiently awaiting the AAA tow truck to bring me gas when there was a knock on my window. It was the grumpy old man. I moaned inwardly because I figured he'd come back to yell at me some more, you know, kick a girl while she's down. I got out and he gruffly asked me where my AAA people were? I told him the ETA they had given me and then he said, "Well I brought you some gas so let's try it and see if we can't get you started." WHAAAAAAT? Oh yeah that crow I'm having to eat is kinda tough to chew. Wow. I take back everything I said about grumpy old man, although between you and me, he was still kinda grumpy and definitely still old but HE BROUGHT ME GAS so all was forgiven!!! He poured it and told me to start it up. I turned the key and nothing...nada....zero. NOW the battery or something was dead! SEe how my night just kept getting better and better?!? Grumpy old man tried it too said the battery was dead and now it definitely was a AAA problem. I thanked him profusely for the gas and he went on his way.
A few minutes later the tow truck showed up. The driver's side door opened and out stepped this guy, dressed in a mechanic's shirt just like in "The Lucky One" ...
And then I kinda felt like the lucky one, I mean you all know how I love me some ZAC EFRON right? I do. OK so fine, it wasn't really Zac Efron but it was a nearly exact replica. OK so fine the Zac Efron lookalike also looked all of about ummm, say 18, so it was borderline inappropriate for me to find him adorable but you know what? I felt like I had earned a bit of goodness in my very bad, horrible, no good night. So I "supervised" while Zac put a gallon of gas in the PMobile and I "supervised" as he also tried to start it to no avail. Then I had to break it to him that I had told the original AAA dispatcher that based on previous, ahem, experience that it usually took at least 5 gallons to get my truck started if I had run it out of gas. Some weird Chevy quirk I guess, but I'm pretty sure the AAA lady thought I was feeding her a line to get free gas. Zac listened patiently, nodded empathatically and put another gallon of gas in it and then hooked up some jumper cables to try and get it going. STill nothing. Like the true gentleman Zac was he told me I could go sit in his BIG truck to stay warm. Isn't he so sweet? He loaded my PMobile up on the flatbed of his truck and then got in and asked me where I wanted to go. A movie? Dinner? Vegas? HA HA JUST KIDDING GI JOE, he asked me where I wanted him to take my PMobile, whatevs, same diff. While Zac was loading up my truck on the flatbed I had called GI Joe who told me to just have him tow it home and he'd meet us there with more gas as he thought it probably just needed more to get it started again. I reluctantly agreed even though it could've been awkward, I mean my teenage crush Zac Efron meeting the love of my life, my husband of nearly 15 years? I just hoped it wouldn't come to blows over me but was fully prepared for the worst. Also, I still really REALLY had to go the bathroom and Zac's truck was a big bouncy semi. Nothing like being alone in a semi cab with a Zac Efron lookalike, trying to make small talk (I'll spare you those details but I did learn that he had graduated from high school, see I'm not a pedophile!!!, & that while his shop was directly across the street from the new Dunkin' Donuts he had not yet been there, among other things) while simultaneously trying not to wet yourself. Ahh good times.
We FINALLY made it to the house and GI Joe was waiting for us, dukes raised ready
The other good news is that between the gas that the grumpy old man, Zac Efron and GI Joe put in my truck I had a third of a tank and didn't have to get gas for a day or so!
I wish I could neatly wrap up this story with a touching paragraph about how through this trying experience I learned a valuable lesson about the importance of keeping a full fuel tank or heeding the warning light on the dashboard that alerts me when I'm low on gas but the truth is that's not how I roll. Nope, in fact my gas light came on again this morning but never fear, I stopped on the way home from work and filled her up. What I did learn from it was that 1) sometimes even grouchy people can be nice so even when you want to be really sassy with them because they're being grouchy and yelling at you, you should try to be sweet and 2) which tow truck company to call should I ever be in need of assistancd again because nothing turns a traumatic experience around like having Zac Efron come to your rescue and 3) that Zac's name is actually not Zac but instead Sam (how cute is that?!?) as my loving husband keeps correcting me every time I ask him if he's enlisted Zac, I mean Sam, yet and can he email me that picture.
So in this season of thanksgiving I'm thankful for the kindness of strangers, AAA....and Zac Efron.