February 17, 2014

Real Life: The Woods, the Woman and the Snowbrush, Part 2

MarcusMatteo

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20140130_122639   So I sleep for only a few short hours and wake up to be dropped back off with my car. I am now armed with the sun on my back, a snack bag, 300 dollars cash and a shovel I’ve purchased for 10 bucks. With the light I can now see that though the area is heavily wooded, there are a few houses here, though I wonder how anyone could really drive on this ‘road’. I walk up that hill I couldn’t make it over, and I’m relieved that I did not….waiting on the other side was a steep drop into a completely unplowed cul de sac. I would have gotten my car back in the spring. I call roadside assistance again. And after many conversations, despite that fact that I’m willing to pay, the companies will NOT tow me. They are either unequipped, too busy or said they would come and never did. So I decide I will get to work with my shovel and keep moving back. In about 4 hours I had managed to get my car back 800 feet. Which was great, cause I only had about 3500 more to go (yes that was sarcasm). But soon enough, I was stuck again, this time on ice. At least when it was two of us, we could  easily push it over these problem areas, but by myself, it just was not working. So another hour later, I was starving, out of food, cold, low on energy, and showtime was coming up around the corner. Some guy at the tow company said he could get me “but it’d be at least 600 cash”…..riiiigght I said. Certainly a last of the last resorts.

I was getting desperate, I called the police, an officer came, and said the most he could do was drop me off at a store…..again thanks for nothing. Shows at 7 and its now 5. I’m rather physically and mentally exhausted, pretty much out of options and now also out of hope. Just as I’m swimming in my mind, on the deep end of my woes, I hear the slow crunching of snow under heavy tires followed by the low hum of a truck. ‘They couldn’t be passing through’, I think, there’s nowhere to go. Out steps the woman , Laurie is her name, she has just picked up her daughter from school. Funny this is, when I first turned to see the truck, I want to scream and ask for help! Help of any kind really, but life (and pride) has foolishly conditioned me against it. But Laurie presumes “you’re in some trouble there huh….. come on lets go make some calls”. I’m informed that I am not alone in my auto debacle, apparently it happens often enough. Shes now taken me in her house, even lets me make a sandwich, which literally taste like the best sandwich I’ve ever had! We exchange a little info about each other, brief yet thorough. She makes calls to the same result as Ian before. “I’ve got tow ropes” she proclaims as she dials for more options, but shes just not sure where to put them on my car. “Really, well you know we can just google it right?” And after a few more unsuccessful calls, that’s exactly what we do. We swiftly rebundle for the cold and we’re off with planks of wood, the ropes, and her all wheel drive truck. The wood turns out to be a failure, so we just decide on dragging it back with her truck. We devise a plan, I can steer and help accelerate and maybe if we can get to the driveway of her house about 1500ft in and I can turn around and make it out alone. We get going and it is’nt smooth sailing, sometimes I’d have to get out and shovel, dig my car out of a trench, dig hers out a few times too and we’d reposition and try again. It takes us more than a hour but sure enough we reach the driveway!

I slowly ‘3 point turn’ in and out the driveway and shakily on the unstable snow I anxiously head forward on a section of road more plowed and much less volatile. Laurie is now following close behind making sure I’m successful. I grip the wheel forcefully with elation, knowing that this ordeal is finally coming to an end and soon enough, I’m back on paved road! Me and Laurie get out our vehicles and confront each other for a hug and a goodbye. I know she is unaware of how so appreciative and grateful I am for her help. I’m very close to being moved to tears, but I ‘man up’, push it down and keep it lighthearted. Despite my insistence she refuses to take ANY money. We exchange Facebook contacts and I head off. After I get to the hotel I change as quickly as I can and I make it to my show 10 minutes before we go on. And though I had been freezing outside all day (with no sleep) I KILLED it and sounded great! Though we were down two singers, we got a quick local replacement and the band gave a great show despite all the turmoil that had transpired. The trip was technically a 5 hour drive, my car was stuck more then 16 hours, and when 19 tow companies left me hanging, 1 woman named Laurie saved the day, which cost me not 600 dollars but 10 for a shovel and 2 days of backaches and the worst I had to deal with was 3 frostbitten toes. Maybe I could’ve been fine without the ‘excitement’ of my journey but I have no complaints, as everything turned out well in the end and I met a woman who help restore my faith in humanity. But as for Michigan…… we wont be seeing each other for a loooonnng time. Stay warm!