Wednesday, May 19, 2010

100 minutes

A hundred minutes ago I was puttering around the Camp Warehouse rigging the NVUM stuff onto the rack behind the big truck.  It's 4:30 pm. The cell phone rings.  It's some guy who saw the cargo trailer ad in the newspaper.  He sounds breathless.  He says, "Where are you?  I want to come there now!"  I tell him our location.  Meanwhile, I scurry about closing the Warehouse door, getting the trailer door lock key and, for some odd reason, I go out and stand like a cow in a field on the sidewalk.  As if on Hollywood cue, a small red sedan practically screeches to a stop in front of me.  The guy jumps out and say, "Where is it?"  I hustle him off to see the trailer in the backyard.  He pokes and prods and asks pertinent questions.  First he says it's too small.  So I go into my "Don't buy the trailer" routine.  Then he says, "OK, Eight hundred cash."  And so I say, "Hey, I already got an offer of $900 cash, I'm not taking $800."  So, he says, "OK, $850 and that's it."  And I say, "Hey I gotta get to a store that's closing at 5 pm, you go home and think about it and maybe we will talk.  I gotta go."
So, then he says, "OK, $900 cash and I want it right now tonight."  So, you know me, being me, of course, all the way to the hilt, I said, "Well, I've been holding this trailer for an old lady who wants to go camping and I can't just sell it without checking with her first, ya know?"  Honest.  So, then I call up the old lady's son-in-law and tell him the situation and ask if it's OK to sell the trailer to this guy.  Jimmy (the old lady's son-in-law) says in his Jersey accent, "John, I say GO FOR IT!"  So, then I tell this guy, well, I gotta talk to my wife, I can't sell this trailer without making sure it's OK with her.  He rolls his eyes.  I call Susun and I tell her the story and say "Is this OK?" and she gives approval.  SO, then I say to this guy, "Well, it looks like it's OK, how are we going to close this deal?"  And he says, I will go get teh cash and bring it back here."  And I say, "No, you going to get the cash and you're going to bring it to DMV."  And he says, "Why is that?"  ANd I say, "So I know it's in YOUR name and not mine."  He rolls his eyes and says OK.  Meanwhile, folks, the clock has ticked down to 4:40 pm--this has all transpired in a mere 10 minutes.

OK, so we make a plan--he's going to rush to the nearest Wells Fargo and get the $900.  I'm going to find the paper work, make a bill of sale and get down to DMV.  He's going to meet me at DVM.  OK, the clock is ticking and we are both playing RACE THE CLOCK.  So, he jams off and I run around the house rustling papers and finding my wallet and I take off like a rocket.  It seems I hit every stop light red and I find the slowest vehicles to follow.  Finally, I see the goal, the DMV office.  I look at my watch as I stuck in a red light--it's 4:58 pm. They close at the stroke of 5 pm.  Somehow I get into the parking lot and get INSIDE the front door before 5 pm.  Now, I start watching the big wall clock's second hand as it sweeps second-by-second toward 5 pm.  Two seconds before 5 pm, Carlos (the buyer) practically leaps through the front door and then they lock it behind him.  Since we were both INSIDE the Motor Vehicle Kingdom BEFORE 5 pm, they will finish our paperwork.  I hold my breath.  Does he have the money?  Since I couldn't find the title, will this deal go down?  Will he have an acceptable Idaho ID card?  Finally, it's our turn at the window and much to my abject surprise, the clerk said I don't need a title, just the VIN number (which I had).  She executes a registration for Carlos, accepts his Idaho drivers license and, poof, it's a done deal.  Carlos and I walk outside, exchange the usual pleasantries after such a deal and then part ways after making a plan as to when he will pick up the trailer.

Meanwhile, My heart is racing.  Are these 9 one hundred dollar bills the real thing?  So, I rush off to the nearest Wells Fargo and it closed a few minutes before my arrival.  What can I do?  Then I remember the Wells Fargo branch that's inside the Smith's grocery store.  Surely they will be open.  I rush over there and pull out the c-notes and say, "Check this money and make sure it's good."  So they run some behind-the-scenes tests on the bills and they come out smiling and say, "They're GOOD!"  WOW, so I deposit the money and get a receipt and E-X-H-A-L-E.

(I just checked the time stamp on the bank receipt. It was 5:27 pm.  The whole thing took 57 minutes!)

Then I do a little shopping, spend ten bucks and come home.  I mix a wine cooler, decompress a little bit and 100 minutes after it began, I sit down to write this blog post.

All I can say is WHEW, WHEW and DOUBLE WHEW--that was a Major Dust Devil!

Cheers, jp

PS--There's a little more to this story that's outside the realm of the 100 minutes.  We will tell it tomorrow.  It's time to be Happy for at least an Hour.

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