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Thursday, 6 February 2014

CAN-tastrophies of Note



Litha is shouting a panicked broken vernacular through the phone and I can’t for the life of me work out what the problem is.

“Slow down, what’s going on?”

Through her manic mumbling I hear the words “water” and “geyser”... which are just about the worst two words a person can hear unless used in this sentence:

Your geyser seems to have inexplicably filled itself with wine, and now when opening the kitchen tap, a rich red mix of magical Merlot gushes out in place of water.

To this qualm the response would be far more forgiving, dare I say enthused.

Alas, a severely crappy week has just been made horrid by my geyser bursting, the wretched event following a trial separation with my beloved car, Vegas.

Vegas has been high maintenance from the get go; thermostat something somethings, filter thingy-ma-jig replacements, that time Virgin Active slaughtered all four tyres in what I can only describe as murder by spiked barrier… And I’m no angel – scrapes, scratched, swiped side mirrors and many many fast escapes fleeing the scene after embarrassing bumps. The kind of material misogynistic comedians would just eat up. We’ve both played our part in this relationship, so much so that our theme song is a mix of Lily Allen and Taylor swift:

“Screaming and fighting and kissing in the rain, it’s 2 am and I’m cursing your name… But that’s the way I loved you.”

“Fuck you, fuck you very very much.”

But this last doozy might have been the final straw. Ray at the service centre, which I am forced to send Vegas to at least twice each year, delivers the news in a sombre Dr Phil tone:

“I’ve been doing this for years and I gotta say, she’s blown a gasket.”

Yeah yeah, you can’t change what you don’t acknowledge. At least we were off the highway when the engine, in girl terms, blew up.

So sans car, sans water and sans sanity I let out a desperate whimper to Litha, still in a complete tizz: “You’ve gotta be kidding me.” A desk cry and 4 Birols later I was in a sea of 1st plumber, body corporate, mechanics, roadside assists, AA, insurance consultants, service centres, 2nd plumber, furniture repairs, banker, 3rd plumber… THIS IS MY HELL.

I’ve never really had to deal with such a monumental fuck up on my own, my survival consultant, Mamma Bear, is usually on speed dial, talking me through this horrendous process. Said Mamma Bear was out of signal range in the Kalahari and so lil’ ol’ me had to buckle up and sort shit out. And as it turns out, there was a silver lining peering round the puffs this doomsday cloud…

In the middle of the madness, I had a moment.

I thought: Carly you can do this. Somehow, you’ve picked yourself up, dusted yourself off and proved that you are in fact, a very capable grown up. There’s something beautifully freeing in knowing that you can look after yourself. Well, almost…

I should mention that throughout my debacle, a man with a red flapping cape had scooped me up in his arms and was carrying me over the threshold of panic. When I felt overwhelmed, his superhero powers calmed me, reassuring me that everything would be ok. When I couldn’t stand to make another phone call, he transported at the speed of lightning to attend to the sea of sharks I felt was circling beneath me. When I grew weak, he fought my battles. When I had no way of getting anywhere, he appeared as if from nowhere with a will and a way.

I realized just then, that I’d been wearing a cape of my own so long, I’d forgotten how wonderful it felt to let someone else save the world. To let someone rescue me.

And something in My Guy (who for the purposes of this blog will be known as My Hero), changed too. With a giant “S” on his chest, he glowed. Swooping in to save me, and he truly did save me, his heart ignited.

Louis Lane looked into his eyes with faint recognition, and felt as delicate as a petal. She understood, for the first time, what it felt like to be truly cherished.

Clarke held her strong, his arms shielding her from all that was wrong with the world. He understood, for the first time, what it felt like to be truly needed.


So yes, I CAN get through stuff. I CAN understand insurance-speak. I CAN keep it together when things fall apart. I CAN survive without a car. I CAN let someone take care of me. And maybe, I CAN let them do it a little more.



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