CSI: West Plaza (Summer 2013, Part 1)

We haven’t cooked much the past few months.  Barely at all the entire summer. It’s been more of a cereal-while-standing, drive-through-line-while-sitting kind of menu.  Less about what tastes good or is good for us, and more focused on what requires the least amount of time and money.

Why didn’t we have time to cook, you ask?  Well, it all started on the last day of May. Friday, May 31st, to be exact. That morning set the craziness of this summer into motion.

I was running late and it was absolutely, 100% the weather’s fault. At 4 a.m. my iPhone screen kept lighting up and my entire bedside table vibrated with each new alert from The Weather Channel app.

4:04 RIVER FLOOD WARNING
4:16 SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING
4:22 RIVER FLOOD WARNING

Alright. We get it. The house is shaking with thunder. We are aware of the severe thunderstorm and the river flooding. Now, please be quiet so I can pretend it’s not happening and go back to sleep.

4:30 RIVER FLOOD WARNING

Enough! I reached over and yanked my phone, pulling the charger out of the wall, and in my half-conscious state turned my phone to “Do Not Disturb.” Brilliant idea in the moment. Not so much two hours later when I needed to wake up. My sleepy alter-ego rejoiced.

Over-sleeping ensued and I woke up 20 minutes before I needed to leave for work. There was no time to tame the lion mane that is my hair, (or any point to doing so as it was post-rain-humidity-city outside) so it promptly went in a wet bun on top of my head. In an attempt to not look like a complete train wreck at work, I threw on a blazer and my nude heels.  Precariously balancing on said heels while holding my keys, tumbler of coffee, purse, and computer bag, I rushed out to my car parked on the street in front of our house.

As I walked around the back of the car to the driver side, I thought, “Why is there glass on the ground? That’s strange.”

Four steps later, I discovered this was not just any random glass in the middle of the street, but, in fact, the glass from my driver side window.  Well, isn’t that special.

smashed windowIt appeared that at some point during the previous evening’s thunderstorm a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad person felt the urge to throw a rock through my window. Difficult for me to understand as I have never felt the urge to vandalize someone else’s (very expensive) property. But it must have been an urge he couldn’t resist as he did a smashing good job. Sorry, couldn’t help myself.

And I use the pronoun “he” because that rock was heavy and I assume it takes a lot of force to break a window.  And the villainous character in my head just works better as a dude.

Shattered glass covered my front seats, soaking in puddles of rainwater.

Shattered glass on seat

They could have at least taken my empty Starbucks cup for me.

A few other words, some of the four-letter variety, went through my head, so I took a deep breath, did a 180 and headed back inside.

First call went to my boss. “Hi. Happy Friday. Someone threw a rock through my car window. I’ll be in later this morning. Thanks. Bye.”

Second call to P.

Me: Hi. Someone threw a rock through my car window. I don’t know what to do. Help.

Patrick: Have you called the police?

Me: No. I don’t know what number to call. While this is certainly an emergency to me, I don’t think it qualifies as one to the 9-1-1 dispatcher.

Patrick: Ok. Is anything missing?

Me: I don’t know.  I don’t think so.  I don’t want to compromise any evidence in the crime scene.

Patrick: Did you clean it up?

Me: No. Like I said, I don’t want to open my door. There may be fingerprints on the handle.

Patrick: (silence….)  Ok. I’m leaving work now. Be home in a few minutes. I’ll call the police and the insurance people.

I quickly added this instance to my mental list of Reasons Why I Got Married. Of course, the first reason is because I love him, followed by his good looks and charm. Just a few below that are his cooking skills. And now joining those reasons is because he knows things about cars and insurance and what the heck you do in this type of situation.  I don’t. But I watch a lot of crime shows, so while I waited for P to come home I went outside and took about 30 photos of the car, the window, the glass on the ground, and the inside of the car.  All without touching the vehicle or the glass, I might add.

Once Patrick came home, he immediately covered the car window with a tarp to prevent additional water from accumulating on my leather seats. Good thinking. Guess I could have done that.

tarp covering car

Then, he looked online and found the number for the KCMO police non-emergency line. Good thinking. Guess I could have done that, too.

He paced around the family room while on hold for 15 minutes as I recounted how I had found the smashed window and continued to emphasize that I did not touch anything and it was all as I had found it. Patrick didn’t pay me much attention. Just some nods and “uh-huhs.”

He spoke to a lady at the KCMO police station and filed an official report. They asked if anything was stolen, Patrick said no, not that we could tell. And about a minute later he hung up the phone.

Me: Well, when are they sending someone out here? Are they going to check for fingerprints?

Patrick: (sigh) They aren’t sending anyone since nothing was stolen. I filed the report for insurance purposes, and even if they  did send someone, they wouldn’t dust for fingerprints. It rained and no one died.

Me: Rude.

Add my dreams of solving a criminal mystery to the list of things shattered that morning.

P then called the insurance company to let them know about the incident and that we would need to get the window fixed. They set an appointment for us with Safelite Auto for later that day.

I followed P outside with the dustpan and a trashcan. He swept up all of the glass on the ground and from inside the car. He wiped down the seats and removed the standing water from the inside of the door using a meat injector. Resourceful. I took more pictures. In my defense, my heels were not conducive to vandalism cleanup.

Patrick cleaning carPatrick sweeping glassHeels and a dust pan

Later that day, after the window had been replaced and the excitement (mainly my excitement) died down, we sat on the couch trying to understand why this happened. After much deliberation, we came to the conclusion that, in addition to the rock-throwing vandal, the on-street parking was partially to blame. While we loved the house we were renting, and the neighborhood, this wasn’t the first instance in which our car had been damaged while parked on the street in front of our house.  Stupid moving truck.

It was with that conclusion that Patrick said two words that would change our entire summer.

Patrick: We’re moving.

And so began The Summer Adventures of 2013.

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