Bring an umbrella to work and leave it there. That’s my first rule.

Fortunately I abide by this rule and had an available umbrella when a rainstorm came up out of nowhere this afternoon. Rule number two: barefoot is okay if you’re wearing closed-toe flat shoes. Who wants to walk through a puddle that will basically squish around in your shoe for the entirety of your five jillion mile trek to the car? No one.

Rule three is to roll up your pants legs. Fellas, please don’t do this. I mean, you can. But I think it’s probably a better idea to just let the ladies save their pants from the rainwater and you suck it up and let your pants get wet. But you can totally secretly wish you could roll your pants legs up. That’s cool.

Anyway. It might also be questionable to carry around an umbrella in a lightning storm. Avoid this if you are the tallest person in the vicinity. Or something.

If you’ve gone off the deep end like me and are actually walking across a college campus without shoes, watch where you step. Fortunately this is the deep south and people keep their needle drugs hidden in their apartments under their Bible, so the likelihood of accidentally stepping on a syringe is fairly slim. But tiny pebbles can REALLY hurt. Especially if you’re just splashing along minding your own business and come down pretty hard on one. This is the sort of accident that would generally end with me slipping and falling down in a lake of rushing rainwater. Fortunately, today I managed to avoid such an eventuality. Barely.

While I made it to my vehicle surprisingly dry, considering the deluge, the splashing, and my general clumsiness, things changed quickly once I was inside the car. Yeah. I know. That doesn’t sound right.

Rule number…oh whatever. If you drive a small car, have a game plan for closing and disposing of your umbrella BEFORE you shake it around in the door way and then end up with it dripping in your lap. This defeats the purpose of carrying an umbrella at all.

And finally, even when it’s raining, it’s freakin’ hot in Alabama in July. If your small car has no air conditioning, you’re going to want to roll down the windows. At this point I would say all previous rules are moot and everyone should just walk proudly through the rain in soggy shoes and pants and deal with the fact that one’s car seat is going to be a little damp in the morning.

Oh wow I’m so glad I thought of that now… one towel for driver’s seat officially waiting to be forgotten at 7:15 tomorrow morning. Check!

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I went camping this weekend with Dear and Funky Friends and overall, had quite a good time. I even put together the tent all by myself before anyone else arrived!

The Tent I Assembled Alone!

The Tent I Assembled Alone!

Of course then it started to rain, which was an exceptional bummer. Especially since my phone chose that precise moment to die and I hadn’t given very explicit directions to DF and FF on how to get to the park. Not to mention that my car was also blocked in by the trucks and SUVs of other campers, so I couldn’t drive anywhere to find a phone with which I could call them… so, in the middle of a rather bad thunderstorm, I walked up to the front of the campgrounds. Keep in mind: I don’t have a raincoat or an umbrella with me, either (where was my brain when I was packing??). By the time I make it out of the gate (which is on a timer to close at 7:30pm – meaning it’s also getting dark out), I’m completely soaked. I mean completely. And my friends take about 15 minutes longer than I would have predicted to arrive, so I post myself by the big sign announcing the entrance to Chewacla State Park and wait.

It’s at this point that a very nice young lady stops to ask if I’d like to have her umbrella or if I need a ride. Well, no, I definitely didn’t need a ride and I was a little frightened to use an umbrella with all of the lightening going on, so I turned her down as politely as I could, though I’m sure she thought I was ridiculously foolish. She drove away. Five minutes later, she was back, insisting that I get into her car.

“I was sure that I’d read in tomorrow’s paper about a woman dying outside of Chewacla and I’d never forgive myself,” she told me as I dripped onto her leather seats. She introduced me to her three year old son, then assured me that she wasn’t a serial killer. I’m surprised she didn’t ask me if I was.

I borrowed her phone and called Funky, letting her know my situation and telling her better how to get to the park. It wasn’t l0ng before they pulled up and rescued me from my rather uncomfortable situation, thankfully bearing Wendy’s for dinner. There was definitely not going to be any fire that night, as the rain continued well into the early hours of the morning.

I’m not sure how we managed to unload our cars into the tent, but we did it! I’m quite proud of us for sticking it out in the rain and the storm (despite fervent text messages telling us of hail and tornadoes) and the tent I’d put together held out incredibly well. We stayed dry (except for me, I never managed to dry out at all this weekend…) and had an awesome time. There are many a tale I could relay here, but I’ll get around to more when I have pictures to help illustrate the stories. The one above was taken with my cell phone just prior to it’s crapping out on me, so I depended on Funky and Dear to keep a photographic record of our fun times.

More to come!               :::::::::::Liz departs with a Boyscout salute and a smile:::::::::::

If you keep up with my Facebook status (or remember my weakness for awesome heels that define ‘beauty=pain’), you’ll have an idea that I really wanted to rock some heels and a skirt at least ONE day of these sales conferences. Well, today was the day. I had absolutely no problem in my cute little kitten heels until the end of the day when I decided the wise course of action would be to take the subway the fifty or so blocks between my meeting and my hotel.

This, of course, sounds completely logical. Subway 50 blocks vs. walking 50 blocks? No brainer. My feet would thank me.

Or not.

Believe it or not, this post isn’t even really about my feet. Don’t get me wrong, they are in pain. But I’ve already written about my feet. And while they are fascinating and unique, the story wouldn’t be all that different from last time. Blah blah, walking, blah blah, standing, blah blah, blisters… you know how it goes. No, this isn’t that sort of post. It’s a bit more complicated than that.

I stepped on to the wrong E train tonight. I knew I should have stopped in the doorway and turned around when I saw puddles of water on the floor of the subway car, and in some of the plastic seats. That can never be a good sign. But there were people in there, so on I got.

The moment the train starting pulling away, it began to rain in one corner of this subway car. Very, very close to where I was standing. Keep in mind, I’ve spent all day at an art publisher’s new title presentation, where “surrealism” is a frequently used term. Needless to say, this was a very surreal moment, and I recognized the beauty of that image. Especially as this rain didn’t fall or splash on me.

And then the train started to slow down. That’s when a surreal moment turned very real. Yes, I got “rained” on. No, I don’t know for sure if it was rain. And if it was just rain, I was WELL underground (the E is like 3 flights below the street at that point) AND inside a subway car, so it was likely some seriously nasty rain. Ew.

But I was committed to this train ride, and in all honesty, it brought me out of my shell. I stayed sort of  huddled in my corner (where it hadn’t rained, but was definitely in the splash zone) as the rest of the car was filled to the brim and I warned oncoming passengers at each stop that they shouldn’t stand in certain spots unless they wanted to get wet. I was friendly, and I know they appreciated it. It surprised me that no one else warned people, even people who had been on the train when I arrived never said anything about where not to stand. That is rude.

Anyway, that wasn’t the end of my troubles. From the E, I had to transfer onto the 6 to get back to my hotel. Usually, the signage is quite good at these stations, but I had a hard, hard time finding the 6 from the E at 53rd and Lexington. I went up three flights of stairs (NOT an escalator, blurgh) in my heels, with my briefcase/bag on my shoulder and my skirt beginning to be more of a bother than an asset… {Allow me to also state that at least twice in my journey upward, the heel of my shoe caught on the lip of the stair and was yanked from my foot…. ewwww subway stairs barefooted!!} only to realize when I FINALLY reached the top, that actually, I was never supposed to have climbed all that way in the first place. So, I turned around and clomped back down, slowing everyone behind me down I’m sure. Very embarrassing.

As it was rush hour (or rush 3 hours, as it were), it took me at least an hour to get back to the hotel. At which point all I really wanted was to pick up my computer at the front desk and crash on my bed for several days… but this was delayed when the dude at the front desk couldn’t be bothered to turn around and retrieve my bag without summoning a bellhop first. This took another good ten minutes. When he finally arrived, he couldn’t find my bag. Apparently they store bags in several different locations at this hotel. I was too tired to panic, and thankfully he did find the bag (right behind the desk all along)… but it was certainly a struggle to stay on my feet those last few minutes.

The best part of today was coming up with the title for this post. When I write my memoirs, don’t be surprised if this becomes the title to that, as well. Well, maybe we can work to transform that MISadventures into something more positive between now and then! Wish me luck!