Friday, August 3, 2007

Dumb Girl Routine

Ahh, my first Friday vacation day! I stay in bed until 7:30. When I get up, Andy asks why I didn’t sleep in late. This is late! I usually get up at 5:30. I have a full day lined up. I want to take care of those things that mess up my weekends. I don’t want anything to interfere with my plans.

You know what they say about best laid plans. I get a later start than I intend. I head to the gym first. It’s nice to finally have a gym closer to home. The clientele during a work day is interesting. I notice there are more women. They arrive two by two. I’m halfway through my workout and I see them leave as they came. That couldn’t have been very strenuous I think.

One guy has been here since I arrived. He’s giving it a good effort and he looks like he is fit and works out regularly. I’ve never seen him before. He has a long yellow ponytail trailing down his back and a black patch over his left eye. My mind starts to make up stories about how he may have lost his eye. Could the reason have him building such muscles I wonder?

An older woman is walking around with her check list. It’s the type of check list your personal trainer writes up for you. She has really good leg muscles. I need to get leg muscles like that! She can’t figure out how to set one of the machines and she asks me for help. ME? I must look like I actually know what I’m doing. I help her out and it seems I do actually know how to adjust the machine. What do you know!

It is already noon by the time I’m off to the market. Why is there so much traffic? Shouldn’t these people be at work? The market is busy too, and the shelves have a lot of bare spots. I have trouble finding some of the items on my list. There are a couple of workers in the isle that I take for stock boys. One guy is tall and slender, with gray hair and the other is shorter and younger. I’m not even sure he needs to shave. There is something not right about the body language. As I get closer, it is evident that the work schedule is being discussed. The older guy tells the younger one he is too busy! The young guy tells the older guy that it has to get done. He’s the only one available. I quickly realize that the young guy is the manager, and the older guy reports to him, and not taking too kindly to it either. I’m impressed with how the young guy is handling this total lack of respect that is bordering on insubordination. By the time I round the corner to the next isle, I’m ready to can the older guy. Maybe he should give himself an attitude check. He might then realize why he is the stock boy and not the manager.

After my late lunch, I take off for more errands. I stop by the Yamaha dealer for some brake pads. I don’t even think I need brake pads, but I need something to do for “wrenching day” on Sunday. I’m waiting patiently at the counter. The customer alongside me at the other register has just purchased something considered “miscellaneous” and the clerk can’t figure out how to enter it into the computer. My clerk has to move over to help him out. The other customer and I watch the fumbling for several minutes at which point I tell the guy his purchase must be free. It’s evident by the looks on the clerks’ faces that they don’t realize I’m joking or they didn’t like the joke. The big guy waiting to pay thinks it’s a good idea and gives me a quick wink. They finally get it sorted out and I tell the guy I need brake pads. Parts guys at motorcycle shops always give me the blank stare. “Oh geez” I think. “Here we go again.” This is the point where I always fall into the dumb girl buying parts routine. “It seems I’m going to be educated this weekend on how to fix my own bike” I tell the guy. The blank stare begins to disappear. I start to prattle on about how I don’t really think I need to change them. “After all,” I say “I just climbed two mountains and the brakes seemed fine to me. But since I just had a tune-up, I guess I have to be educated on something.” The parts guy is listening now. I tell him how beautiful Mount Washington was and his eyes light up. I go into my story of climbing Whiteface and Mount Washington all in one week. Now I have one up on him. He has never been up Whiteface. Both parts guys are now very helpful and chuckling at my stories. I always hate having to resort to the dumb girl routine, but I never leave without them knowing I’m far from it.

After a few more errands, I realize the day is getting away from me. If I’m going to make the best of these Friday vacation days during August, I will have to make better plans. All in all, I enjoyed the feeling of liberty and look forward to a month filled with freedom Fridays.

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