Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Lost in my home town...


Speaking of head injuries…no? We weren’t?…Oh…where were we then? Uh… oh yes, vampires. Well, not to get off the topic but I’m going to get off the topic for a sec to tell you a true tale of terror that happened to me today, the parasites will have to wait for the next time slot I’m afraid.

Today I went to pick up my husband at the airport, a thing that I have done at least a zillion times in a city I’ve known since I was a baby; it’s about a forty minute drive from my house and I thought I knew where I was going until I found myself terribly lost in familiar surroundings!

I cant really describe the weird horror of looking at landmarks I’d seen at least a thousand times, yet still having no idea how to get to where I was going! I didn’t think it could get more frightening when I realized that not only didn’t I have a cell phone on me, the “You have no damned gas in your tank fool!” icon had just lit up!

I could feel the tears starting to jam in their ducts as I tried to make sense of the stupid waking nightmare I was in, but alas, the “City of San Jose road-map receptors” in my brain had been snapped in the accident and left me no “workable” memory of how to navigate that town anymore!

Then the brain weasels started to go off in my head, they sounded something like this weasel 1: “ Gas, I need gas, where’s a damned gas station for Chris-sake!” weasel 2: “Gas station! Jesus H. Christ, your 45 minutes late already!” Well, if I don’t get gas soon I’ll be a lot later than that dopey!” “Ok, ok, don’t panic, I see your point…you just passed one though!” “Why didn’t you say something earlier?” “Sorry, you could turn around maybe?” “ oh yeah where? I’m in the middle of a five lane thorough fare in lunch time traffic, by the time I can turn around I’ll be in Campbell so I may as well get gas there!” “But isn’t Campbell heading away from the airport, I think your heading back to Santa Cruz!” “ Well it’s to late to snivel about it now, I need GAS!” “Fine!” "Fine!"

I let the weasels go at for a time, while I looked for fuel and fought back the water-works.

Finally after 10 more minutes of stop and go traffic I spotted the most beautiful Shell Gas Station on my right, and as luck would have it I was in the right lane; pulling up, jumping out, sliding bank card, keying pin, gassing up, take a deep breath, asking for directions, get in car, drive away, get back on the freeway, miss the turn off…oh shit not again! Getting off of the freeway, getting back onto the freeway…shit, missed it again!

Then the brain weasels take another go at it –“Ok let’s go through down town, just follow the airport signs, oh look, there’s one that says ‘Airport on-ramp next right’ finally! Oh no…damn-it!” theres another sign that says ‘On ramp closed for repairs’ Jesus, Mary and freaking Joseph!” “They don’t have a detour sign up!” “Don’t panic, look there’s an airport shuttle follow it!” “Oh for cryin’ out loud, it’s just going to the convention center to drop someone off!” “ Look, up in the sky it’s a plane! Follow that freakin’ plane…I think its landing!” “ I sure hope it’s landing and not just lifting off and heading for LA, that’s the wrong direction!” “Oh shut up!“
“Make me!”

Finally I spot the airport terminal sign and surcease from the madness is assuredly mine! Looking for ‘American Airlines Arrivals’ oh good, there it is …I see my poor hubby frying in the sun on the opposite side of the terminal he motions me to pull over. Poor guy, not only has he been frying in the sun waiting for his ride for over an hour, he looks very stressed and concerned, he asks me “ Are you ok?” Then the brackish lets loose of my eyes and I could only shake my head no…

That old saying holds true -" you never miss your water, until your well runs dry" and this was a close encounter, a glimpse of what it must be like in the beginning stages of a disease like Alzheimer or even after a bad stroke, suddenly finding that you can no longer do a task or remember a place that you have taken for granted most of your life is a terrifying thing!

I try not to take anything for granted any more, whether great or small, all of the things we can do are miraculous...

6 comments:

Pisces Iscariot said...

Forgive me - I realise that that was a traumatic episode for you - but I nearly wet myself laughing, especially the 'most beautiful Shell station' Well portrayed like a script for some old Steve Martin movie. I'm sorry, hope you have fully recovered from it now. :-}

Spooks said...

Thank you, I have recovered fully now, and I did wet myself writting it...

Karmyn R said...

sad, scary, sad, hilarious - I was afraid the story was heading toward one of those "end up in the wrong part of town" stories. So glad it ended happily - you getting to the airport!!!!

Spooks said...

Thanks darlin'. I loved your piece on bigfoot but was unable to post a comment on your site...

sapphoq said...

Yep I understand your getting lost on the way to the airport story. I also have a traumatic brain injury.

I found that I could not tolerate the commercials playing on the radio when I was driving. Now I have one of those fancy satellite radio boxes and its' worth every bit of the 11 bucks a month I pay for non-commercial radio. Cutting down on that little bit of aggravation made me less prone to things like screaming at people for following too closely or cutting me off [in my case they really aren't. ah, those wonderful perception problems I acquired that go with the TBI vision problems] though I have to admit that my husband still finds my talking to myself during driving {e.g. okay now that is a stop sign. you have to stop for it.] a bit scarey.

I got lost one day on the way to a friend's house in the town that I live in. For awhile, I felt like what I imagine Alzheimer's to be like. Except that no one was listening to these sudden difficulties.

It is almost three years later and the driving thing has gotten better. The prism lenses help immensely with that. I still cannot multi-task except for driving. I've resigned myself to single-tasking.

Already I see that I've talked too long-- longer than is usual when commenting on a stranger's blog for the first time.

Oh well, have a good one and til next time, sapphoq

Spooks said...

Thank god! I'm not the only one blogging with rattled brains lol...