There was a terrible wreck downtown, on a surface street, with one car that looked like a meteor had hit it, bent and caved in and with a vaporized crater where the driver would have been. The street was blocked off, not in a temporary way with caution tape and an officer, but with heavy wooden barricades and metal signs. How had it happened? I couldn't imagine the speed necessary for that destruction being achievable on this tree-lined residential backwater.
I wished the participants in this tragedy well, then navigated around to another highway onramp and headed for Target. The water pipe had burst by then and the girl at the coffee shop was explaining in tedious detail to her wildly irate clientele why she must ruin their lives. Fuss was no less put out, but then he's four. Each time a middle aged woman fulminated over her missed lowfat frappuccino I saw that vaporized drivers compartment and thought uncharitable thoughts.
We did a few things, and I ended up carrying him out of the store under one arm like a bag of dogfood, unkindly growling "I'm not Mama, you can't pull this junk with me because I'll just pick you up."
I'd have preferred an express trip home, but we still had to pick up Tiner (as the wife will henceforth be known, having objected to a perceived negative implication in her previous nom de blog) so it was back downtown.
A terrible band was playing Concerts in the Plaza, producing a feeble melange of rap & acid jazz that came across like a couple of music school dropouts who's stoned epiphany that Grandmaster Flash would sound great with a fiddle accompaniment survived the morning after. Fuss charged around the creek while I sat suffering on a warm, flat stone.
(Fuss, fooling the universe with his angelic front)
"Okay, we gotta go, Fuss...come on."
We eventually reached home & its cooling breezes blowing off the ocean and the back deck called so I made an exemplary gin & tonic and turned up our Ella Fitzgerald Pandora station to drown out the mindless chatter of the derelict neighbors, who's departure six months ago on the heels of several police interventions we had celebrated & who had bizarrely just moved back in, an unwelcome residential Groundhog Day.
The drink and the musical choice were spot on, enjoyment magnified by the cooling salt air. Tiner was in the shower, Fuss was in the front yard playing with an 'invention' involving an active garden hose, a length of plastic tubing & the foot-stomper from an air powered rocket launcher he got for his birthday last year, and for the moment I was alone with my drink, and Ella & the ocean air.
It wasn't long before everything began again, but with a better soundtrack & cocktails.