Saturday, October 18, 2008

Everest Street

Today I did some shopping for Jon's nephew's birthday. I picked up a couple of books and Barnes and Noble, and since that bookstore just happens to be near the Nordstrom Rack, I figured I'd check it out. 20 minutes later I was holding a pair of $200 Burberry flats that are too fabulous for me to dwell on. I carried them around as I checked the accessories, the purses and as I thought about winter coats. Are these shoes worth this $200? Yes, Yes they are, and will I ever find them for 50% off again? I LOVE THEM, there is no chance they will be here next time - I mean, how strong do I have to be?

After pacing around the store for what felt like hours with my new favorite most-dreamiest shoes, I decided it just was not meant to be. If I was anticipating guilt, guilt would most certainly come. The fabulousness went back onto the shelves. (ahem, Santa.)

So one thing that I really wanted to get Jon's nephew was a little backpack. He just started preschool recently and every cool kid needs a cool backpack. So I did a Yelp search of the best toy stores near my zip code and I came across a store called Mabuhay Kids and set out to find it. The store ended up being pretty close and as soon as I located it I started looking for parking.

I noticed that there were a lot of people out and about. I wondered if the neighborhood was just like that, or if perhaps I had unknowingly stumbled into a touristy part of town. But everyone did seem to be heading in one direction which was sort of odd.

I circled the blocks over and over trying to find a parking spot. Pedestrians, hills and stop signs slowed this process down significantly and after 20 minutes I started thinking about throwing on the hazard lights and running into the little shop to grab what I was looking for. But then I came to a T Intersection and found myself with two choices UP or DOWN, for I had come across of one San Francisco's notoriously deadly steep streets - you know, the kind that make you feel like your car is going over a cliff?

Surprise surprise, there is ample parking on this street and being a total Maverick I decided that I could park there. BIG MISTAKE.

So there I was - Almost completely vertical in my automobile and pulling into an impossible parking spot nose first. I got parallel with the curb, but was worried that I was not close enough. I released the brake ever so slightly and cranked the wheel and my car LURCHED forward. Is this good enough? I wondered. I put the car in park but BEFORE I put the emergency brake on, I let go of the foot brake. And suddenly, the very little space between my car and the one in front disappeared and I saw the nice Lexus SUV rock ever so gently to my Accord's suggestive bump.

I called Jon and said very eerily, "I am in the shittiest situation ever."

What?? He said.

Dude, I am on the steepest of all steep Mt. Everest fucking San Francisco streets like vertical, and there is not space left between the car in front of me and I gotta get out of here.

Okay, he says, Okay. All you have to do is put the car in reverse WHILE THE EMERGENCY BRAKE IS ON and start reversing - once you hear the car trying to reverse, take the brake off.

I knew that this was what I was going to have to do, but having never done it, I was nervous- there really was no margin for error. It was kind of like if I was rock climbing in the middle of nowhere and I got stuck under a boulder - I'd call Jon and he'd tell me, Dude, you're going to have to cut off your arm.

So I did. I did the automotive equivalent of cutting off my arm. All is well. Jon even said he would bring me back to the store later so that I could run in.

And we did just that. I got just the backpack I was looking for and as I checked out I asked if there was some sort of event going on and she said "OH YES! the Red Bull Soap Box Race!" And it aaaalll made sense.