I went swimming this morning in Tallahassee. The skies were a bright blue with a few fluffy clouds to keep it from being too perfect. Another day in paradise, right?
My friends Barbara and Irena came about fifteen minutes after I’d begun my imaginative water ballet in the deep end of the pool at Trousdale Aquatic Center. When they’re present we chat about wine and books as we paddle from one side of the pool to the other. When they’re absent I pretend I’m a mermaid, so for a quarter of an hour I was in another world altogether.
We had a swell time today and even made plans for wine and cake on Friday. After an hour of frolicking I bid the ladies adieu and headed to the showers. It didn’t take long for me to get squeaky clean, and soon I was ready to go in search of food.
A lady I don’t know came into the locker room as I was leaving. “Did you hear? Shirley’s car was broken into.”
Now I do not know Shirley, but my sympathy was instant and sincere. Like an idiot I asked, “Here? In the parking lot?”
“Yes,” she responded. “They smashed her window and took her purse.”
My heart sank. I’d left my purse under the seat of my car. I hurried out to the parking lot, but didn’t have to walk far in order to see that my driver’s side window had been broken.
Glass covered the seat and floorboard of my Mazda. I cussed. Like a salty old sailor. Then I went to see if the police were already on their way. Four other cars had also been broken into and purses taken from every one. The police officers were efficient, but not very reassuring.
Apparently a group of enterprising thieves in our area targets cars in the parking lots of swimming pools and fitness centers and movie theaters knowing that their owners will be busy for quite awhile. They sure had a nice payday on this one.
It took me the better part of an hour to clear the glass out of my seat so I could drive without poking holes in my buttocks. Even then I pricked my hand on a sliver embedded in my steering wheel.
I spent the remainder of my day canceling credit cards, calling the department of state to notify them that my passport had been stolen, and the IRS to report that our measly little refund check was in the hands of ne’er-do-wells.
Thank goodness I didn’t have my social security card in my wallet. That was the one bright spot of the day. Probably the thing that bummed me the most was that they stole the beautiful bag that I purchased on my trip to Guatemala.
So I want a do-over. I want to go to bed like Bill Murray in “Groundhog Day” and wake up to the sound of Sonny and Cher singing I Got You Babe. It could happen. Right?
Thanks for listening.