Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Typical Adventure; We Quest for the Quest Itself or, "Characters" or, "I don't think this guy is actually Kenyan"

My friend Joe and I had an idea. We would wake up at 4 in the morning on (last) Sunday, climb in my Ion and make a 7 hour trip to Kissimmee, FL to watch the St. Louis Cardinals play (beat) the Atlanta Braves at Disney's Wide World of Sports. Everything started off great, we were wide awake for most of the trek, had some wonderful Cracker Barell breakfast, and saw the sun come up across the Southeast Georgia swamps. We arrived at the park at 11:30, pulled in, walked to will call where I picked up the 4 tickets that I had purchased, originally expecting Graham or Matt or Lee or Josh to be with us. That wasn't a problem, though, as the game had been sold out and I had no problem selling the extra seats to some eager fellow Cards' fans. Anyway, we walked in to the park and watched BP. After the typical pregame festivities, the game started. But, much to our dismay, the rain had other ideas. Twenty minutes into the resulting rain delay, we, soaked and satisfied, decided to head out. After another twenty minutes of waiting in line to leave the park (we weren't the only ones with that idea,) we finally got back to the car and pulled out. That's when the magic started. Leaving the park, I rear-ended a Ford 4Runner that I thought had pulled out into traffic as we were turning right. The girl driving was frazzled, but not hurt, thankfully. Her car had a tiny dent in the bumper, and she was able to carry on as normal. The same can't be said about my Ion. The hood of my car had essentially wedged itself under her bumper, smashing in my bumper, crushing my headlights, and pushing back my hood. It was a disaster. The cops arrived, filled out the paper work, I called AAA and got a tow truck to come. 30 minutes later, Louis showed up with his tow truck, and a thinly veiled Cuban accent. He told me of his friend's service center that was 25 minutes away, in a tone that conjured memories of pushy Mafia Dons from movies. Frustrated and soaked, I went against my better judgement and let him take us there. When we showed up to Rossy's Complete Auto Service, "Rossy" was there waiting on us (which is significant seeing as how it was 2:00pm on a Sunday.) He walked me through what had to happen and how long it would take, etc. After it was all cleared up, Joe and I waited around for an hour (with "Rossy," because he didn't want to make us stand out in the rain) for the cab to show up. Finally, the cabbie showed up. Draped in his New York accent, he explained the subtle details of how he moved his family from the dangerous streets of New York City to the palm trees of Orlando, Fl to protect his 4 year old from the lifestyle there. He was a shady fellow. But, we arrived safely and un-taken-advantage-of'd at Hertz to pick up the rental. HH Dahtanni, who, according to his nametag was from Kenya (but there's no way he was actually from Kenya,) walked me through everything. I guess he liked me somewhat, because he hooked us up; Joe and I got to undertake the seven hour drive back in a 2010 Volvo S40 Sedan. It was the second nicest car I've ever driven.
Finally, at 1:45 am, we pulled in to 579 Martin Lane. My car, still in the Garage of Rossy's awaiting redemption, should be ready for pick up by my weekend, when I'll have to make the same trip all over again. Hopefully, without the suck this time. We decided that it was the most failed road trip ever, considering that it lasted 22 hours, for 22 minutes of Spring Training Baseball. We left with a taste for adventure, we returned soaked up to our waists and missing a car.
In spite of all the loss, it was a great trip. As Joe said, "Another classic Mondo and Joe adventure!" Can't wait until the next one...

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