Friday, July 31, 2009

Double, Double, Toil and Trouble

Home, finally, after what seemed like hours spent on PCH driving home from LA. The sunset we had hoped to catch did not disappoint. But, it came and went, leaving us captured, marooned in an island of Mercedes and Jaguars, inching along PCH.

AM 980 says it has something to do with a chase that ended around Coastline. Why, oh why didn't we take Sunset instead of Wilshire? Why, oh why, oh why? Always why.

Why not? This is, after all, what happens when I don't listen. If I'd listened, I would have gone, instead to B & N for the third Magic Kingdom novel. (After proudly paying $1.00 today for a new Ventura County library card, the library didn't have it.) Then, I would have come back home and read till my eyes were heavy, in the comfort of my own living room, but nooooooo. I had to ignore my voice and traipse my little behind to LA and get stuck in the aftermath of goodness knows what on PCH. Did anybody catch the news???

I have to get back to Landover. because I must answer a question that is burning in my mind, "Will Ben and Willow ever get to have fun and relax and play?" Or must they always be battling demons and dragons and witches and fear and self-doubt. My gut tells me, I already know the answer.

The answer is no, not in Landover, nor here, in Oak Park, California, in the US of A. There will always be demons to face, dragons to battle (or to serenade), voices to listen to and others to ignore. Our knight, or fairy-being will emerge from within, rise up and save the day whenever called upon.

And, when we don't listen to our inner voices, our scribes, or our inner wizards, we can sit our butts in a sporty little Jag with uncomfortable seats, inching along PCH at sunset, feeling yesterday's anger, that was by no means gone, now turning to helpless frustration. We can stand back and watch as the frustration squeaks out of us in a low-pitched whine and a mini-temper tantrum erupts.

Poor Harold. He, at least, didn't crack. Miracles abound. He just kept inching along. I pulled it together (after all, I'm really not 12) and we finally broke free of traffic, at Coastline. Whereupon, we pulled in to the Taco Bell/gas station where I proceeded to STAND IN FRONT OF THE WOMEN'S ROOM DOOR for what felt like 10 minutes! No lie.

And I can hear this steady conversation going on in there as a line of 8 more women piled up behind me, all of us victims of an hour or more sitting in traffic. Finally, out comes a woman apologizing, with two boys in tow, one must've been 11 or 12 and the other maybe 6! What in the everylovingworld were those boys doing in MY bathroom? When there's a perfectly good men's room that NO ONE else is using. Geez. Puh-lease!

I'm home. I'm safe. I'm ready to crash. Head to pillow. I'm grateful to have a full day scheduled for tomorrow.

And today behind me, new lessons learned.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Expletives Deleted

Hello, it's Sunday. I slept in. Till 8:26 anyway...

The anger from yesterday has drained away. At least for now. When I get back in the little rental car that may change. But for now, we're good.

Yesterday it coursed through my veins like steroids. I barked at drivers that got in my way (yes, my windows were up and the A/C on), letting steam escape so my head didn't blow. The anger simmered, trying to boil, even after spouting in my first-day blog. Interesting how much energy anger creates, it forced me to begin what I'd been contemplating for a year!

So I'm driving down Westlake Blvd, turning on to Hillcrest, when Gretchen Wilson, singing "Redneck Woman", called for a collective "Hell Yeah". Being the good-ole country girl that I am, I obliged. Only immediately following my mondo-loud 'Hell Yeah', came a slew of expletives at the top of my lungs. It felt so good I just let 'er rip till the air was all gone!

But that was nowhere near the end. I couldn't find the car lot. It wasn't on Wendy where I'd thought. Harold called me and wished he hadn't. I was hungry and still angry. So I headed for comfort food heaven, In and Out Burger, for a cheeseburger, fries (cut and cooked fresh before your eyes) and Classic Coke. I ate inside where it was nice and cool and enjoyed every bite.

The food helped. I got back in the crappy rental car that is new and full of out-gassing fumes that are now giving me a headache and the seat is so uncomfortable it makes my right hip ache. Do you get how miserable I was?

I found the lot, and nada. But I'm now in Newbury Park, so I decide to drive back to Westlake via Potrero Road, which nestles up against the Santa Monica Mtns. It's wild and free in places, meandering past large horse farms and estates. Beautiful. Peaceful. Serene. Exactly what I needed. My heart quiets. My soul breathes.

Once home, I throw on sloppy clothes, grab my Terry Brooks book, Magic Kingdom for Sale/Sold, and immersed myself in a fantasy world that is eerily like our own.

I dwelt in that land peopled with fairies, gnomes, kings and a dragon till I turned the lights out, knowing that soon I'd be buying the second in the series. Or maybe I'll do something different, this time, and find the nearest library and check it out. I had never read a Terry Brooks book, but last week, when browsing the aisles at Barnes and Noble, this one literally leapt off the rack. And made me buy it. I'm still not sure why, though it was an excellent read. And, I can't help seeing the parallels between Ben Holiday's struggles and my own.

Today, for now, I'm done struggling. I'm done being pissed off. Maybe I'll find my own magic kingdom. Who knows...

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Attorney Misdirection and Lies

Saturday, 5:24 a.m. Bugsy wakes me, meow. As his wish is my command, I'm up, throw on a teeshirt against the chill of the morning, and let him out. It's light, but barely. This is our morning ritual, both of us rising early to answer the call of nature.

I crawl back in bed, he carouses. Usually I'm back asleep within minutes. Not today (though it's Saturday). I am ambushed by sharp, pointy thought-darts, about the attorney who lied to me. He gave me false information to get my business, took my money, then denied ever having given me that advice. I made my decision to hire him based on the fact that he told me, twice, that he believed he could get part of my exorbitant student loan interest discharged for me.

Then, on my return to bring paperwork and pay the balance, he reneged. Said he would never say that. Kept saying over and over and over again, protesting waaaaaaay too much: "I do this all the time and I would never say that."

Bull Caca. Yes. You did. In fact, not only did you TELL me that, twice, we even discussed how it might work!

Then he resorted to a cheap theatrical ploy, no doubt seeing a petite, redheaded female MARK sitting in front of him! He slammed my papers down on the table, stood up and said "Take your stuff, I don't want to work with you." I took my papers and left, asking that my deposit be returned.

Weeks later it had yet to be returned, so my Prepaid Legal attorney sent him a letter. The fellow responded and he wants to deduct "costs" from my $500. Which means...he'll nickel and dime till there's nothing left. Even though he did nothing fruitful for me at all. Nothing. And you know what? I never even signed a contract with the fellow. Yet he can lie to me and keep my $500.

Where is the justice in THAT?

No, I'm not naming names here. Just suffice it to say, it's 10:08 a.m. and I've been up for almost 5 hours. And I'm still seething. Me, who usually walks away.

But I'm tired of being dumped on because people think they're above the mores of common decency. Tired and done. No more dumping. This dump is closed!

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