free hit counter Snacks, please!: Beware the Blue Van!

Monday, October 8, 2007

Beware the Blue Van!

A couple of weeks ago, the Opie sidled up to me, while I was vacuuming Arrowroot cookie crumbs off the dining room rug, and said, "Um. I would like to take your car."


"I would like to take your car. To the bank."

When I stopped laughing, I explained: You can not just take my car! For me to let you take my $20,000 Toyota Sienna, the nicest car that I have EVER owned in my whole life, I would have to believe that you were a good driver. I'd have to actually SEE you drive. And besides, the bank is not very far. One could walk. Or bicycle. Or even take the bus. (If one were a big lazybones.)

And that, I thought, was that. But, since then, I have heard about Juliet, who has been in the country just TWO DAYS and already drives to dance clubs on New York Avenue. Or the other one, the lovely girl from Panama, whose host family lets her have full-time use of a cute little Accord. (But do they get fresh-baked cake every week??) Later, she also assures David that she's driven much bigger cars than mine in her home country, where the roads offer much greater perils than our suburban streets.

Enough already!

I decide to let her drive to Target. (I need to buy her new pillows anyway because she doesn't like the feather pillows that I gave her. Nor does she like her bed, but that's a whole 'nother story...) I toss her the keys. She gives that squeal of delight. You fans of High School Musical would recognize it. And we're off.

She is nervous, of course, but I am a studied picture of calm. I roll down my window. I turn on the radio. (But not too loud!) I give gentle directions. "Turn left at the end of the road," that kind of thing. And I say, "That's a stop sign up there... That's a stop sign up there... That's a STOP SIGN! STOP SIGN!!"

"Jesus Christ! That was a STOP SIGN! That means STOP!" And now I am screaming because, seriously, it's a two-way stop and we've just glided across 18th Street, where the unsuspecting innocents carpooling to soccer practice have no idea that my van is in the hands of an insane Latin American driver, who now says:

"Ahhhh. I always forget that one!"


Blogger Pamela said...

I am never driving in Arlington again.
And don't let her take the car to dance clubs on NY Avenue! Unless you want it to be stolen so you can get a pristine new one. Plus, I doubt they really have the whole don't drink and drive publicity machine elsewhere (you've lived in Ireland, I know you know!). And have you added Opie to your insurance yet? Cause if she totals the car...

October 9, 2007 at 10:07 AM  

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