On Wednesday I'd just finished writing about my MIA faith and the old house we are considering rehabbing when I got one of those calls I positively dread. Jim. Jim called to tell me he'd gotten on the wrong train out of Union Station in Washington DC and was now stranded in the wilds of Woodbridge, Virginia, at least a good ninety minutes with no traffic from our home in the Piedmont.
There was no way for him to get to his correct train and station from Woodbridge and he wanted me to come fetch him. It was either that or he could do like he once had to do due to cancelled trains, take one very expensive taxi ride across Northern Virginia to get to his car. I sighed, I looked up where the VRE station is in Woodbridge and prepared to leave.
I hate to state this is the part of being married I hate, hate, hate, having to rescue Jim from some misadventure that could have been avoided had he only been paying attention. My father used to call him The Nutty Professor behind his back because of his slim grasp on common sense and misadventure mishaps and mistakes. He's intellectual, he is highly educated and he's a great guy, but he is prone to this sort of thing.
As I was putting on my coat to head out to Woodbridge Jim called back to say he was getting back on the train and taking it to the end of the line, Fredericksburg, Virginia, closer to our home by about 30 to 40 minutes. I'd been to the F'burg train station so I was happier with that.
The only real problem were my phobias. We always have an unhappy conversation around New Year's Eve because I am a homebody. I have no desire to go out and party on most holidays, much less one filled with idiot drunk drivers. I was pretty amped up about having to go fetch Jim in a downtown area I'm only slightly familiar with in the dark on a night known for insane drinking.
And there were drunk assed drivers out there, even as I was living my house at 5 pm. Before leaving my tiny southern town I got to witness as least two cars being piloting by people who were either extraordinarily bad drivers or just plain old vanilla legless boozed up. I did my best to manuvoer around the Drunky McDrunk Drunks and get over to the old town section of Fredericksburg where the train station is. But I turned too soon, realizing my error pretty quickly and I pulled into the local paper's parking lot to consult the GPS on my Iphone, seeing I was only a few blocks away, even with the streets being narrow and one way.
Things sort of went downhill from there....I followed the GPS cheerfully chirped out instructions and ended up at a road block. I'd forgotten that Fredericksburg always has a large 'First Night' family celebration in the old town area. I eased my car close to the road block to try and ask one of the police officers manning this thing the best way to the train station since my GPS is too stupid to pick up on road closures. A huge beefy red in the face cop, high and tight crew cut glistening with blonde hair came over to yell at me and tell me to get the hell out of there with my car. I kind of sat there in shock for a moment or two, until he yelled again and I scrammed.
Burst out crying, driving along the narrow streets wailing and weeping. Being yelled at and called names always triggers me, sending me back emotionally to when I was a seven year old child being sexually molested, called names and yelled at by an authority figure in my life. I go right back to being a terrified seven year old every time.
Adding in all the police brutality and shedding of innocent blood by law enforcement nationwide with the fears of law enforcement I've harbored since the lady I knew, Pat Cook, was gunned down in broad daylight for no reason by a cop I was in a pretty frantic state by the time I reached the next roadblock. This time, thankfully, the officer was a nice young man, an African-American, who talked to me til I calmed down some before giving me the right directions to get to the station and avoiding the many closed roads in the old town section.
After finding and circling the train station about five times I finally found Jim. It just so happens he left his cell phone sitting on his desk and was without a phone. It really complicated things.
I drove home cautiously and avoided the drunks. We stopped for dinner at one of our favorite Mexican restaurants but by the time we got home both of us had enough for one day. Simply gave up and went to bed.