Road Trip! (Monday July 21)

The story so far…

Monday, I go to work as usual.

On OkCupid, they ask a question for the profile: name six things you can’t do without.  I’ve noticed that about a third of the responses to this question include “my iPod.”  This includes me.  When I saw how common that response was, I thought about removing that from the list.  After all, there’s no point in being common.

But that wouldn’t be honest.  I depend on my iPod when I take car trips that last more than 10 minutes or so.  I listen to audiobooks while driving my car.  I know it’s childish: it’s a mechanical form of companionship as I take a drive, no more personal than a teddy bear… and just as necessary for me.

Monday afternoon, I have to leave work early for a doctor’s appointment.  I get into my car, look inside my shoulder bag… and my iPod isn’t there.  I know I had my iPod in the morning; I listened to it on the way to work.  I hunt through the bag, I look around the car, I rush back into my office and look around.  I look under and around my car.  I can’t find it.

I’m running late for the doctor’s appointment, so I have to go.  That evening, I search my car: under the seats, in the glove compartment (which I rarely open), every nook and cranny I can think of.  The next day, I search my office.  No results.

My iPod was gone.  I lost it.

(There’s another possibility that I don’t like to consider: my shoulder bag is in a publicly-accessible place in my office, and it’s possible that someone stole it.  We used to have a rash of thefts where I work, but it’s been several years since we had any incidents.  However, I have no evidence that this was a theft as opposed to carelessness on my part, so I have to let that possibility rest.)

I know I can’t go without an iPod indefinitely.  In particular, I know I can’t go without one on the 12-hour road trip.  Yes, H will be with me; she even has an iPod of her own.  I still want MY teddy bear… I mean MY iPod.  I decide to buy a new one Tuesday evening, which will be the first chance I get to go shopping.

At this point, I’m sure you’re weeping tears at the tragedy of my predicament.  Save them.  “I wept because I had no shoes, then I met a man who had no feet.”  I have not told you what happened to H on Monday.

H was working at a Ren Faire in Connecticut.  She had partnered with a musician for the duration of that Faire, and stored her stage props (remember, the ones she’d had shipped from Texas) in his trailer.

On that same Monday, H’s partner was mugged, and his car was stolen.  He was injured in the attack.  It wasn’t too serious, and he wasn’t in a hospital, but it was clear that he would not be able to perform on the upcoming final weekend of the Ren Faire.

This left H with two practical problems:

– She had to be back at the Connecticut Ren Faire site by 6PM Friday.  Unlike most Ren Faires, which are weekends only, the CT Ren Faire is also open 6PM-10PM on Friday.  She had to be there in order to perform.  If her partner had not been mugged, he could have taken care of performances if she’d been absent; the most important thing is to avoid an empty stage.  With her partner injured, H had no choice: she HAD to be there; “The show must go on.”  Except, as I said in my previous installment, she didn’t say that.  She just had to do it.

– The keys to H’s partner’s trailer were in the car that was stolen.  That meant that all of H’s stage props were behind a locked door.

H’s plan: She’d driven from Connecticut to Pennsylvania to Virginia before; Ren Faire performers travel a lot.  She’d seen many RV dealerships on the roads along the way.  She’d visit them and get a replacement key for a Coleman trailer.  She had to make a road trip anyway; why not kill two birds with one stone?

It seemed like a sensible plan.

Next: Tuesday, July 22.

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