Monday, May 19, 2014

new parking spot

When I moved to Terwilliger Plaza, I brought with me my aged New Beetle Gumdrop (vanity plate: GMDROP). I was assigned a parking spot beneath my windows in a space along the alleyway to the loading door. This spot had several advantages. It was very close to my apartment -- probably two minutes walk total, including waiting for the freight elevator -- and I could look down and see my bright yellow car from my windows, which I did kind of by habit as I prepared for bed each night.

Then, about a week ago, I got an "inside" parking place. It also has several advantages.

It's inside, which doesn't matter all that much now that it's spring and summer, but it will matter a lot when it's unpleasant outdoors.

It's at the far end of the building, which may seem like a disadvantage, but anything that gets me walking instead of sitting has to be counted on the positive side. (Look up "sedentary" in any dictionary, and you will find my picture there.)

It's on flat floor. The outdoor space was on a slight incline side-to-side, which made opening the driver's side door more of a challenge than it needed to be, and which brought rain in onto the driver's seat if I forgot to roll the driver's side window up.

Getting to the new parking space is somewhat labyrinthine. One elevator to the first floor, then a hike along past the mailboxes, library, and restaurant to another elevator, which takes me down to the ground-level parking. But that has a charm of its own. When I think about it, it reminds me of some of Mervyn Peake's descriptions of Gormenghast Castle, which is really unfair, since there is nothing whatsoever to tie Terwilliger Plaza to Peake's accretive, gloomy monstrosity of a building. But one takes one's literary references where one finds them.

The new space is almost right next to the garage door, which means it took me a couple tries to figure out how to head in westward and do a hairpin turn so I could enter my space facing eastward. Turns out what I wanted was not a hairpin turn, but a kind of preliminary swoop northward so that I would have the space to reverse directions without having to back and fill. I am pleased to see that concrete columns here are buffered with plastic foam so I won't be able to scrape any more paint off the sides of my car while parking. If I win the lottery, I may consider having Gumdrop repainted.

Now, as I go to bed, by habit I look for my car, and she's not there. It makes me much sadder than it should. I guess I'm still defining myself as a Terwilliger Plaza resident, and seeing Gumdrop under the alley streetlight was an affirmation that I miss.


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  2. I love this post. It says so much about us, as complex beings and creatures of habit, that I relate to.

  3. I somehow thought you had valet parking? I do get that it's good to walk, but there are days...... ohhhh yeah.