This year for my birthday, I got a digital SLR. This is a camera I've been drooling over for some time, and excitement is an understatement when it comes to how I felt on finding out I would be receiving such a wonderful gift. I love the old '73 Nikon that I inherited (appropriated) from my Dad, but with film prices on the rise and no darkroom access in sight, the lack of photography in my life has left a gaping hole. When I finally got all the bits and pieces researched, chosen, ordered and sent, I paid the extra couple of dollars for speedy delivery. I was hoping it would arrive before the big Road Trip last weekend, so we could get to know each other over cheese and wine at Liz & Jason's nuptials.

The mad dash to get my sticky little paws on the B&H box before we left turned out to be an adventure unto itself.

The goods were scheduled to arrive sometime Wednesday, so I’d have them before we left Thursday afternoon. I harassed the Marysville Post Master several times both days, until I realized that it had been shipped UPS, not USPS. (Yes, somebody accidentally let me into graduate school. Please don’t tell them.) On Thursday, I found out delivery had been attempted to the empty apartment downstairs the evening before – and that the UPS man would not arrive for a re-attempt before we left. After lots of gentle persuasion, I got the dispatcher to get the delivery guy to call me so I could meet him on his route somewhere. A few minutes later, I got a call from a truck on the other side of the county with no relevant package on board. I waited for a follow up call for the rest of the afternoon.

Driving to get Peter from work, I saw a UPS truck in an alley one town over. I sped around the corner, blocked the alley, and ran up to the startled driver waving and looking panicked. No, he did not deliver to Marysville. No, he did not know who did. Please, could I move my car now? I decided to call UPS back. This time, I was told to meet the appropriate truck driver at the Marysville Post Office in half an hour. No problem. I picked up Peter and we headed home at full (legal) speed while I filled him in. Fifteen minutes later, the truck driver called, wondering where I was. No, he could not wait. We could try to catch him on Valley Road, if we hurried.

We hurried, and ended up overshooting him by several miles. I called back.

Me: Where are you?
Driver: Where are you?
Me: Orchard Road.
Driver: Whoa! What are you doing all the way out there?
Me: Um …
Driver : Do you know where the P&R Garage is?
Me: P&R Garage, yeah. We can do that.
Peter (driving): Pee in Our Garage? What kind of sicko is this guy?
Me (glaring at Peter, covering mouthpiece): What are you talking about? Turn around quick!
Driver: I’ll be there in three minutes, ok?
Me: OK! (hanging up) Hurry Hurry! No! SLOW DOWN!!!

In the end, the UPS man got to the P&R Garage and I got my precious box (which Peter accused me of fondling from here to St. Louis & back. Yes, I held it in my lap the whole time. It is a sensitive piece of equipment! Stop looking at me like that!)

In the end, my birthday turned out pretty close to perfect. It involved waking up in an incredible old Columbus row house, a thoughtful conversation with a long-lost friend over excellent indie-shop mocha, getting lost in Columbus’ intricate, twisting alleyways, driving across some beautiful (and some not-so-beautiful, ahem!, Illinois) country, playing with my new camera, and getting some much needed chill time with Peter in the car: nothing to do but drive, talk, think, laugh and be together without the overhanging threat of lists (thank you notes!!) and obligations breathing down our necks. The day ended in a down bag under the stars. A hunting owl shushed me to sleep. A good day.

1 comment:

At A Hen's Pace said...

Happy Birthday!!!

What a great present--and a great story!