Didn’t think I was tired. Must’ve been. I drove seven hours to Washington, checked in, then drove a couple of hours around Washington and ended up in the off-limits part of the Pentagon. Maybe that was a sign.
After that unnerving incident, I drove the four of us to the sports/pizza bar, then back to the motel. There were only two handicap parking spaces, one of which I needed because my mother-in-law uses a walker. The other one was occupied, and a lady had the doors wide open unloading suitcases and such. I politely gave her some space when I parked. I was a little over the line, but I know that handicap spaces have extra wide borders beside them. Well, I think I know that.
The next morning I found a parking ticket on my windshield. Huh? The handicap placard was hanging on my rear view mirror like it was supposed to be. But there was the ticket. I pulled the car out of the parking place and over to the front door to let my mother-in-law get in. Then I went in to the concierge to ask what I had done wrong.
It was then that my daughter told me I was parked over the line, infringing on a space clearly marked that it was reserved for police parking. What the…? She said she had told me last night. She tells me a lot of things, though. She talked all day. Of course, I did too. But the fact is that I do miss some things she says if I’m talking at the time.
The concierge sympathized. She phoned the policeman/security guard and asked him to come down. I tried to tell him that there was plenty of room and that I had parked a little over the line but there was an area marked with lines that allows some extra space for handicapped people. “What lines?” he asked. I walked over to the parking place, and there were no lines. In my defense, there were some lines on the other side of the other handicap space. That wasn’t much help.
I walked back, and he let me know in no uncertain terms that he was forced to park in the back parking lot the night before because of me. I looked into his eyes and said, “I’m sorry.” He melted and took the ticket back.
Driving away and patting myself on the back for my ability to melt him, my daughter told me that he sort of melted when I was off looking at the parking space and she was pleading my case: “You know, officer, she can’t park anyway, and it was dark.”
Having been taken down a notch, I thanked her for her help. She told me she had left out the part about, “And after all, officer, she did have a couple of beers.” Thank you Susan.