Hot Pants

Stuffing groceries into an already stuffed backseat in the pouring rain is not exactly how I anticipated my afternoon to flow.

The expected afternoon went more like…get groceries, go home, put them up, sip a cup of freshly brewed coffee while curled up on the couch to brainstorm new blog ideas, AT WHICH TIME the rain begins to softly patter onto the year old emerald green metal roof, as relaxation commences.

But, my reality was that the more the rain pounded, the more pissed I got and the harder I slung groceries. Eggs and bread? Who knows where they were; probably under the milk. Did I give one fat rip at that point? Nope. All I cared about was getting home, drying off and trying to recreate a better version of the afternoon. We’ve eaten sandwiches shaped more like kites than squares before and lived through it…we can do it again.

Finally the last bag was tossed into the pile and the car door was slammed tightly shut. The buggy was quickly shoved into its proper place to endure the pelting rain drops until its life is saved by a poor teenager paid to come out into the monsoon.

Turning to head toward the car for a quick escape from the pelting rain, I hear a female voice yell “STOP”, paired with the deafening sound of a car horn blasting. Before I could fully turn to see what transpired, the female voice swiftly moved into my personal space as arms engulfed my being and slammed me to the ground. Her weight and heaving breath sounds surrounded me. Trying to compose myself while lying on the asphalt with sheets of rain and puddles all around, was near impossible. Incredulous, I demand, “What the specific hell do you think you’re doing?!”

As water dripped from her face to mine, incredulous tones met incredulous tones as she spat out, “Saving YOUR ass from getting hit by a Ford that swerved to miss a kid that got loose from his mama. Any chance you could locate a THANKS in that pretty head of yours?!”

As to why we continued that thirty second tyrade still lying crushed together on that drenched asphalt, I’ll never know, and the thought came and went as quickly as the distant lightning bolts; but I wiggled free from underneath her weight and stood up, as did she. Holding onto the side of the car, I steadied myself from the weight of the rain soaked clothes that now clung from head to toe.

Guilt washed over me as nerves settled and thoughts cleared. This tatted, jean clad woman had sprung into action to save my life and I lashed out when only appreciation should have been uttered. I looked down at the ground as the drops slowed to a sprinkle. I could feel her piercing gaze heat my face, as indignant fisted hands were forced into her hips, waiting. Slowly forcing myself to face her again, I gazed up into beautiful browns that had a hint of kindness, but a piercing quality of stern resolve that an apology AND a thank you would be received before she was willing to walk away…I provided both.

My right hand, along with a name was offered with the expectation of the same in return; and that became the second unmet expectation of the day. Deafening silence was all that remained as her eyes scanned my face, a face that was most likely branded with mascara in grotesque smudges. But unwilling to allow the awkward, yet jolting silence to continue, I smiled an uncomfortable smile and whispered “thank you again”. She nodded, turned and walked toward her motorcycle.

Paralyzed in the exact spot she left me, I watched her quickly towel dry her hair, slip on a dry doo rag that she dug haphazardly out of the saddle bag, towel dry the black leather seat, strap her helmet securely under her chin, swing her leg over, right her motorcycle, heel the kickstand into place, and maneuver the machine into position to crank and take off. She gave one last look in my direction that startled my paralyzed stare. And as fast as the encounter had been set into motion, her engine roared and she sped off.

Realizing that my drenched shirt and pants were steaming hot and scalding, I notice the weirdness; rain should be cold. My thoughts become a little more clear, less hazy and as I blink drowsy eyes, I see no parking lot. Only my living room that still needs new paint and new curtains, a television that is still spinning the old familiar hallmark tale of unrequited love that is miraculously turned around approximately two hours later and, of course, a million pieces of dog bedding still remaining on the floor that the miniature dachshund decided he no longer needed while we were out. I must’ve dozed off to sleep as I sipped coffee with you today…the coffee that I now wear on my shirt and in my lap. Headed to change clothes and definitely pour another cup. ~paula