Wednesday, August 17, 2016

A Quick Break From the Pawlympics - Driving Miss Brigid

A little break from the Blogville Pawlympics fun and yes, now you know what the "B" in "LB" stands for.

We live in 100 year old Village in Chicagoland.  The streets are small, and most houses have tiny garages that exit to the alley. With a lot that has side yards with lots of space between we and neighbors plus a long driveway exiting to the street, we are a bit unusual (we think the original owner bought two lots for the space, then added the garage in the 50's or 60's).

The problem is, people don't consider that we have to get OUT of that driveway to a narrow street. After the giant four door 4 x 4 truck and I moved in after getting transferred to our office here, there were many mornings I had to wait until the neighbors that park on the street left to get out.  That meant using precious annual leave to arrive late (with a 96 year old Dad living a thousand miles away, all my time off is dedicated to him).

The house across and one down had been a multi unit rental -  basement, first floor and second floor) with several parties living there with multiple vehicles. There's plenty of open space further down, but that entails driving further, even if it's not any further away from their door. After the incidents where I couldn't get out, I made sure everyone got homemade baked goods, an introduction to the bat truck and an explanation as to how much space I need to get out without whacking their vehicles. Other than having to sometimes put out cones when someone had  family member visiting on a weekend, everyone has been awesome.
But that house across and one door down has new owners - a family who is going to live in it with the exception of the tiny upstairs dormer rental, with multiple cars, including a new Ford truck that likely will NOT fit in their little garage.  With several cars there as their extended family helps get the house ready for final move in, some spending the night, it's been a bit crowded getting out.

Yesterday, rather than consider the thought of going through THAT learning curve again and having to use leave because I am late to work - when I came home and the new owner and what looked like (from the resemblance) either adult sons or little brothers were standing outside waiting for a contractor (since it's been a rental, I'm sure there's a bit of work before it's move in ready) - I HAD A PLAN!
They spot cute redhead in big shiny giant black truck and all hold their stomachs in, smile and give a friendly "hello new neighbor" wave.  I wave back.

I normally back in - in one fluid movement, as it makes it easier to get out in the a.m. Having flown for both the US Government and an airline as a Captain, I can usually back that truck in very quickly and very efficiently, in one try (unlike the Reno airport in the winter when there is an ice storm where you just use differential power to SLIDE into the gate and hope you get it right). Even my husband, always the first to poke fun at my driving (all in good sport), looking at me do that said "I'm impressed".

Yesterday, while the new neighbors and family all looked on, I deliberately, and less than gracefully, took about 4 wide tries at it.  I was less than gentle, stomping on the brakes, and on the last one deliberately took the truck THROUGH the lawn (that will buff out) and intentionally almost hit one of the spruce trees, before finally, getting the truck backed in with a screech of brakes.

Today, all the new neighbor's vehicles and those of their family were parked WELL down the street, away from my driveway.

My work here is done.


  1. Hari OM
    I guess living with the title "she who can't park for peanuts" is a fair price for free clearance!!! I can sympathise, albeit from different perspective. I live on a street barely two car-widths in size, in a building which is one of a set of four tenements, each with six flats inside. The Victorians never anticipated garages. Competition for parking space (never mind anywhere near one's entry) is high... then add in the nameless ones who truly can't park and therefore like to ensure they use up two cars' length in one parking manoeuvre; or those who don't like to park further away so try to park on the other side of the street then complain loudly when the passing traffic gets tetchy at not being able to get through ....*sigh* ...YAM xx

  2. BOL!!! How sneaky. I like your solution!

  3. Very wise move - best to stay on the good side of new neighbors. Where we live, one is not "allowed" to park on the street overnight by the rules of our HOA. But no one pays much attention to the rules. Mom and Dad really don't care if people leave their cars on the street overnight, but it really bugs them when they park in front of our house instead of the empty space in front of their own:)

    Woos - Ciara and Lightning

  4. Bravo!!! Good Work!
    Mr Bailey, Hazel & Mabel

  5. that's brilliant! and now I know why our exit is always free, even when the street is plastered with cars... the neighbors saw the mama who tried to find the garage door (11 tries, 87 curses and a damaged firewood pile)

  6. Worst parking experiences was when parking NYC on the street opposite Grand Central Station -- People walked in front and behind me without giving a thought to my trying to get into a space not much bigger than my car!!!

    BTW-- thanks for your donation to our GoFundMe


Welcome to The Book of Barkley and the Blogville dog blogging community. This blog was created for more memories of Barkley as well as updates on Abby the Senior rescue Lab, who we adopted in 2014.

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