This time last week, I had a day that went down the toilet. Literally. How, you ask? Well, I'll tell you.
My car, the sad looking rustbucket of an '86 Mustaang that is my favorite of the cars I've owned, had to have some repairs done. When the car's as old as this one, and had been pre-owned, it kind of happens. While waiting for my brakes to get fixed, I was using my grandma's truck. It ran nicely, was newer than my 'Stang, and, best of all, had a working heater. Not that I'm totally freezing in Johnny 5 (the Stang) but it was an added benifit.
So, scene set. I'm using grandma's truck to get to and from school and anywhere in between. I hit a lull in the day between my classes and rehearsal that evening, so I decided to go to WalMart and spend some of my refund check. I wanted to get a netbook (which I'm typing on right now, coincidentally enough) and had decided now was the best time. I did already have the cash. As I walked into the store, I made a quick stop in the bathroom.
Automatic flusher. Coat pocket too big.
The keys to my GRANDMOTHER'S TRUCK took an unexpected dunk.
Despite the handicapped assistance keyring on it, a piece of plastic as long as my hand designed to make turning the key easier -
THE KEYS WENT DOWN THE TOILET!!!!!
I was, needless to say, in a complete panic. I remember staring, dubfounded, frozen, one hand stretched out to pluck the keys from the water - until the moment they got sucked down. Oh god... I was going to die.
Somehow, I kept myself together and, calmly enough, got some help from customer service.
Wait - did I say help? Yeah, wrong word.
Apparently, their plumbing system is too extensive for there to be any hope of anything to be retrieved once it's been swallowed. This, of course, meant I had to face my other fear - telling my grandmother I had lost the only key I had to her truck. the same key I needed to get back into the vehicle, never mind make it back to school for rehearsal.
SO not my day.
Ever the chicken, I took a roundabout route to my confession of being double crossed by the forces of gravity. I called my mom instead. She, in turn, called the grandparents.
Thank god they have good senses of humor.
They laughed. I calmed down and practiced some retail therapy while waiting for them to come, a cavalry of sorts, to bring me the spare key. The, not a, as they were careful to remind me in their ribbing. Needless to say, I took them seriously and kept the new key attached to my beltloop rather than trust my pocket. I also checked to make sure it was still there at least three times during that evening's rehearsal at school.
The true irony of this story? 1. The store was sold out of the netbook I wanted, seriously minimizing my opportunity at retail therapy. 2. My grandpa, a retired Navy Chief, talked to the management, the district, and possibly then some. I'm not sure how far up the corporate ladder of WalMart he climbed, but he got them to pull the toilet to search for grandma's key in the trap directly under the bowl. You know, after they told me they couldn't do anything to help me.
As I heard later, they found a couple sets of keys.
Not a one of them was my grandma's.