ACT I: Birds of a feather
Just a few minutes after I arrived at my seat prior to Jay-Z and Kanye West's Watch the Throne show at Sprint Center, a woman and her son sat down next to me. They were friendly and asked if I came with friends, and I answered no, that while I did have friends who were here (somewhere), I bought a single ticket. So we proceeded to make good friends. Claudine was around the age of my Mom, and Kip was her adult son. Both were huge fans of the performers (!) and had driven down from Omaha, Nebraska just to see this show, so of course I respected them immediately. Claudine had recently retired from being a high school art teacher for over 30 years. She herself had studied with a famous Japanese potter (whose name I have regrettably forgotten). They were both intelligent and animated, and the more we talked, the more we had in common. They were huge foodies, and we traded notes on the best restaurants in our respective cities (I recommended Justus Drugstore; she recommended Grey Plume). Judging from our rave reviews, I think each restaurants should be paying us handsomely for the advertising! Speaking of which, here are a pair of recent raves: KC Star / Time Magazine
As we carried on, it struck me that I was having a conversation with a 60-something me, and I was enjoying myself. In fact, I'd be quite happy to grow into Claudine: still attractive and fashionable, young for her age, animated and easy to know, funny, and with interesting tastes and passions that run deep. Hoping this really was a crystal ball into my future.
ACT II: Kanye vs. Jay-Z
Read my synopsis of this spectacular show here! Admittedly, I was feeling guilty for spending $100 on a ticket and then not being thrilled with the new album, but was thrilled to be proven wrong—Money well-spent!
ACT III: Rav-4 vs. Semi
This is where the tragedy starts. After a euphoric 2.5+ hour performance, I exited the arena and headed back to my car in the Wall Street Tower parking garage. It took over 20 minutes to get out... and about 16 minutes of that was waiting to back out of the spot. People were not feeling generous. I finally exited and rounded the block, headed back toward I-35 to go home. A semi truck was ahead of me for a few blocks. We stopped at a red light, where I needed to make my turn. He also had his right turn signal on. Alright, going my way. I waited patiently. This is where the trouble began.
Without warning, the semi which was stopped directly in front of me back up. And after 1:00 am, I guess my lightning-quick reflexes aren't sufficient, because I laid on the horn and threw it into reverse as fast as I could: and the semi crunched the front of my car anyway. The driver got out, clearly hopped up on adrenaline, and first got upset and asked what I was doing behind him, and claimed that he never saw me. Once I explained that we were both turning the same direction and I was just waiting for him to go through the light so I could get to the freeway, he softened, and admitted that he *didn't* intent to turn right. He was parking. And he had overshot his parking spot on the curb... and backed into me.
A security guard called the police for us, and we waited over 40 minutes, but all the police were tied up with traffic control. So we took photos of the damage, exchanged information, and went our separate ways. With me hoping that he didn't change his story later—since we had no witnesses to prove that he backed into me, and that I didn't rear-end him. This made me nervous!
ACT IV: Update, December 9
I enjoyed my week in Lake Tahoe, dropped the car off at Toyota on Monday for repair, picked up my rental car, and my car was done, as promised, by Friday. It looked good as new, though it was after 5, and getting dark, when I picked it up.
ACT V: Can I please be done already??? December 28
I took the car in yet again because on Christmas morning, 3 light inexplicably illuminated on the dash: Check engine, VSC, and 4WD. I assumed it was an anomaly from the accident. Toyota said it wasn't: I had a rare occurrence for a low-mileage car in which a gas valve went bad. They said they could probably cover the $1600+ repair cost for me. And while I was talking with them, I asked them about the oddly-curved panel in the lower front of the car which I thought should have been straight after the collision repair. And the scratches on the hood, which was supposed to be brand new. Apparently they missed those minor details. Guess who has to take the car back for repairs during the New Year?