...and I'm not even in Iowa!
On Saturday, Helen and I were hanging out in Hamilton Park, enjoying the annual festival along with a couple of smoothies. I went back down later after she left, had a gyro, and chatted with Jon R, who lives around the corner and often brings his kid to the park. (And if I have the story straight, he was comic artist Jim Lee's roommate at Princeton. I remember running into Jim in a Japanese restaurant near Marvel—1990 or so, I think—and he said "Hey, I heard you know Jon R!" Back then, Jon would come to JC to see Andy, who lived around the corner and later provided the historical record of the Giant Cat. Jon later married Andy's then-roommate. Sometimes she's in the park too.)
I went over to my garage and got Henry the Ford Taurus, so that I could run a few errands. He sat patiently on the street, parked and waiting for my return when I went into the apartment.
And the skies opened up. First there was torrential rain, then thunder and lightning, then more rain.
"Oh no," I thought. "Henry hates rain. He won't even start in the rain."
Then I remembered the alligator clip that Mike the Mechanic had given me. He'd marked two solenoids with Wite-Out and told me to test the starter using the alligator clip and the solenoids the next time the rain knocked out Henry's ability to turn on.
"Maybe I'll have the chance to do that tomorrow," I thought. "No way am I going out in this to put Henry back in the garage. It's dangerous out there with all that lightning."
BOOM CRACK. The lighting was right on top of me. Scary.
Then I heard a different kind of crack. I looked out of the bathroom window to see a large piece of a tree had been lightninged right off and was hanging perilously by a few strips of bark. Yikes.
And that wasn't it for the water. In the morning, Henry surprised me by starting, but he surprised me further by sloshing.
When I opened the driver's side door, Henry sloshed.
There's water in the door. Only in that one door. Somehow—the angle of the rain, maybe?—Henry's driver's side door was flooded.
We drove to the supermarket, then the laundromat. While my clothes were spinning, I sat in the parking lot and swung Henry's door open and shut as water dripped out with each swoosh.
The laundry didn't work out. Water was my enemy there too. The machine I chose didn't take my money, but then a stranger convinced the finicky machine to take it anyway. All this machine did is fill up with soap and spin my clothes. I assume someone had put in soap before, tried the machine, and given up, so there was way too much soap in the machine now. I had to hand-rinse my clothes in the sink (before switching laundromats to finish the job.)
At home, while I was putting away groceries, the skies opened up again. No! No more water in the door! I grabbed an umbrella, ran outside, and took Henry home to his house.
There's still water in his door. I hope it drips out instead of rusting.
I'm not in much better shape than my loyal car. Every morning, in the shower, giant clumps of hair are coming out. What's that about? Maybe it's my seasonal shedding.