Thursday, October 22, 2009

Did you see her?

....Did you see the girl that ran out of gas and got stuck in the MIDDLE of the road because there were cement barricades on both sides of the road and no shoulder to pull over to safety?... at rush hour no less. What an idiot. Who pushes their car to the limit, thinking they can make it home when the gas light is CLEARLY on BEFORE they start their drive home for work because judging on how far the last tank of gas, they should have another 50 miles before needing to fill up?

Oops. That idiot was me. I was on my way home last night and I as pulled out of my work parking lot I thought to myself... "My gas light is on. But on my last tank of gas I got at least 50 more miles so I should make it home easy... hope I don't run into traffic." And so the story begins. Traffic was actually great until I hit 495 after the exit for 66. It was backed up all the way from the toll road. I did what every normal person would do and since I knew somebody flying into Dulles (one of my marathoners for the weekend), I decided I had a completely justifiable reason to get on the access road, right? right. I'm feeling good about this decision because I am flying (obeying the laws of the road, mom) past all the cars sitting on 267 because of an accident up about 4 miles towards my house. As I'm talking through my blutooth stereo to Melissa I all of the sudden feel my car do this weird kind of gentle jolt. I thought it was kind of strange but kept talking... my other line rings. It was my marathoner saying he had arrived. My car jolts again. I click back over to Melissa.

"Melissa, I think I just ran out of gas."
In an octave higher than my previous statement..."OMGosh, Melissa, I can't make it to the shoulder... I'm gonna get hit I'm in the middle of the road!!! I gotta call you ba....." click.

I hang up the phone and think about who can I call to bring me gas so I'm not stuck in the middle of the road. Did I mention it was rush hour?! Wait, forget the gas... I realize I need to call 911 to get a cop car behind me and keep me from getting rear ended... do I get out and THEN call the police or do I call them from in the car?!! Oh Lord Help me!!!!

911.... "Hi... um, I ran out of gas and I'm on the toll road where there's no shoulder to pull over to. If I stay here much longer I'm sure I will get hit."
Apparently my voice reaches extreme octaves when I get a little (or a lot) nervous because the dispatcher was having a little trouble understanding me "Ma'am....Ma'am!! I cannot hear you... Do NOT get out of your car and please tell me again, where you are and what's going on."

I took a breath and repeated what I had just said. As I was doing this a cop with his lights on pulled up behind me. Never have I ever felt relieved when looking those flashing blue and red lights in my rear view mirror. Oh but I was. He got out of his car, came up to my window as I was telling the dispatcher that there was a cop there now. I told him I ran out of gas and that I was such an idiot and how sorry I was. The dispatcher heard me and tried to comfort me "You're not an idiot. That just happened to me yesterday."
"You ran out of gas and your a cop?"
"I'm not a cop, Ma'am."
"oh. right." Ok, yes I realize that dispatchers are NOT cops but all of the adrenalin must had gone to my brain and for a second I forgot.

The DISPATCHER got off the phone with me as the, now 4 cops were pushing my little blue car up the hill to get past the barricades and onto the shoulder. Ok, so I know at this moment as these older, a little overweight (being gracious in that statement) cops is not most appropriate time to find humor in a situation but again all of the adrenalin in my body had to go somewhere now that I wasn't scared for my life. I looked again in my rear view mirror only to see these sweet cops giving everything they had to push my car to safety. and. it. was. funny. I put my hand over my mouth to cover my massively uncalled for smile. But I could not control the giggles. They finally got me to the shoulder after about 50 meters of pushing up hill and I put the car in park (but didn't turn it off) and got out to thank them... I must say they looked like they had just gotten done with a preseason work out. Bent over, hands on knees or over their head, breathing heavy, face red, and foreheads sweating.... and of course they couldn't even mutter the words your welcome as they gasped for air intermittently......

More to come....

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