Do you ever feel like the universe is conspiring against you? That the Gods have gotten together and decided to play a practical joke, just on you?
But more so it was the events that transpired on Sunday that made me think the cosmos had secretly put a target on my back and all and sundry in the heavens above were taking aim with glee…
It was on that day, having been charged with the task of meeting my Dad in Sydney who was flying in to spend a week with me, that I somehow managed to leave the house sans mobile phone. Rather inconvenient when you have to try and find someone who may not know where they are going and you have assured them you will be contactable at all times….
Cue a few desperate voicemails to my Mum to explain just how I’d find my Dad at Sydney’s Central Station without it, I was forced to board the train and trundle 1.5 hrs away, a ball of anxiety the entire trip.
Finally at my station and I had spare change for one last call – The Husband. Another who did not answer! After one last vain attempt at communication he answered – relief! But respite was short lived. The screaming son in the background signalled perhaps it wasn’t such a good time for him to try and be sympathetic about the situation I’d gotten myself in. Nor was it probably the place to remind him that he was living my world, every Monday & Tuesday but for me they are last about 13hrs solo…. But I digress! And now, with no change left I legged it up into the City in the vain hope of (a) cheering myself up and treating myself to lunch at a former fave haunt and (b) finally get some coins to enable me to use a public phone. Of course the diner was closed – bugger!
And do you think there was a Convenience Store in sight in which I could get some change? Inconveniently, there was not…
Racing towards Pitt St Mall, and with no time to admire the new renovations, I stumbled down to the Food Court which was swarming with the lunch time crowd. Finally, laden with coins, I was cashed up enough to make as many calls from a phone box as my heart desired. Only problem now – I couldn’t find a public phone to save my mobile-less butt!
I hurtled back up to Street level, and finally found one right next to the busy road side. And yes, the pun “its like Pitt St around here” certainly does ring true. I was able to place the call but damned if I could hear if anyone was answering at the other end. Twice.
By this time I was drenched in an anxious sweat and panting after all the running – and STILL I was not able to locate whether my Dad was in the vicinity. I knew there’d be more phone booths at Central Station on the platform I hoped Dad would be. I stalked the length of it – not a bloody one in sight! Yet casting a longing look at the 5 platforms stretching out to my left, and the 7 or 8 to my right – yep, all dotted with the distinctive, bright orange Telstra domes. Oh yes, I was on the ONLY platform that was not fitted with a phone box!
And so the marathon continued, me dashing to another platform to place another desperate call to Dad’s mobile (1st box busy) and then finally found a free one (did I mention by this time I had to get over my phobia of germs lingering in public places such as these?!). Oh sweet relief when I finally made contact with Dad – except that he’d missed his train from the Airport (no thanks to the dithering man in the ticket queue who didn’t know how to use the damn machine) so we were then going to miss out connecting train back to the Central Coast. And wait half hour for the next one…
Now, this wouldn’t have been so bad except for the fellow passenger who sat directly across from us, and who we’d have to share our sojourn home. She was sizeable, sweaty and smelled like she had not showered in about 6 months. Worse, I suspect she was suffering from some sort of schizophrenia as she spent the whole 1hr 45minute trip alternating between laughing, crying and chatting to her various invisible friends surrounding her. I was feeling sorry for her until she started picking at her scalp and flicking unknown things in out direction. Nice.
But eventually we arrived in the haven of home, and were greeted by the still cranky child (you know things are bad when Harrison’s beloved Poppy cant even shake him from his funk), and yes, we may have had a tumultuous few days but at least I could share the insanity with Dad rather than shoulder it all alone.