I haven't had such a good day today.
Maybe that's an understatement.
Today was a bad day.
Well, up until 2:30pm, anyway.
I made a series of very dumb choices today, which is the reason for this not-so-grand day of mine.
Last night, as you all know, was July 4th, and it was a good night full of food and fiery fun.
I didn't go to bed until late in the night--er, early in the morning, & then had to get up today at 8:30am for a photo shoot with a girl that I went to high school with two years ago.
Getting up? Not easy. But besides the fact, I dragged myself out of bed, said a quick prayer, and got dressed. Then I received a text message from my, (I guess you'd say) "Client," letting me know that she and her friend were going to be about 15 minutes late--which was completely fine with me, because I had wasted about 15 minutes sleepily staring at my dresser earlier on before forcing myself to get up and going, and so now I could really use the extra time.
I arrived at Starbucks at 10:15am, and sat at an empty table at the side of the crowded cafe. After a few minutes of anxiously staring at the Starbucks entrance anticipating their arrival, I received another text message telling me that they were there, but had to get gas at the gas station. Happy that they at least were keeping me updated, I waited patiently.
I bet you're thinking that I got stood up.
If not, several of the Starbucks regulars thought so.
But the girls arrived 15-20 minutes later, which was an agonizingly long time to be sitting there by yourself while people gazed in your direction with apologetic looks.
Anyway, the three of us decided that we were going to go to take photos in the country side of our town, at a place that my friends and I had discovered on Friday while aimlessly driving around looking for good photographing spots. The thing is, when my friends and I went on this little road trip, I wasn't driving. Nor was I paying full attention to how to get there. I thought I was, but apparently I wasn't.
Taking people that hired you to a place that you only have half of the directions for? Dumb choice.
So I get in my car, the girls get in their car, and they follow me out into the boonies. I am all confident and excited about the photos that we are about to take, patting myself on the back for having such a spectacular idea. But then my confidence fades into panic as I begin realize that things no longer look familiar, and I suddenly have no idea where I'm going.
"It's got to be around here somewhere," I thought. So I keep driving. Next thing I know, I'm turning right onto some highway and I have no idea where it leads to, or if there's even an exit that I'll be able to find my way back from.
& as luck may have it, there wasn't an exit for about two or three miles.
And this whole time these poor girls in back of me think that I know what I'm doing, or where I'm going. Some photographer, hm?
Eventually we come to this two way looking exit which I pull off on to, open my window, and yell to the girls with a very embarrassed and apologetic undertone that I am really, really, really sorry, but we have to go back because I can't find the place I was looking for. They were very nice about it, and told me that it was okay (but I'm convinced that they think I am insane). Then we flip a U-ey.
On the Highway.
But I prayed this morning.
So we drive back the way that we came, and we arrive to the place that I recognize as where I first turned onto the highway. Only, it looks like you can't turn off the highway onto that street. But last minute I realize that I actually CAN turn onto it, so I make the sharpest left turn in the history of left turns. ---Which was almost another U-ey.
Another dumb choice.
& Because of this rash decision, the girls behind me are forced to make the same extreme left turn, which made me feel awful and embarrassed, and like they might think that I actually brought them all the way out to the boonies just to murder them where no one could hear, because I don't seem professional at all and I'm probably not even a real photographer. Which was not my intent, I promise.
Once we made the turn, we drove all the way back down the street that we were formerly driving on and I began to pray that there would be a nice place to stop off at, that way I didn't waste these people's time and (all of their) gas. Then I remembered: earlier on, on the way up, I had seen a slope with patches of grass and pretty flowers and a two small swampy ponds that almost looked pretty, so I settled with stopping there. Once the lush grassland appearred, we pulled over and parked on the sloped side of the two-way street.
But like I said, I prayed this morning.
We got out, ran across the street, and took several hundreds of photos amongst the pretty flowers and near the swampy water. Then it got really hot. I mean, really hot, & we spotted some shade a few hundred yards away near two rickety looking houses. As we were approaching this little nestle of trees, we saw in the doorway of one of the rickety looking houses, two middle-aged Mexican men, who were whistling and catcalling at us. (Disgusting.) But we quickly walked further down, avoiding them, and took several photos around the trees. Suddenly we heard the sound of rustling gravel directly behind us, and a old car slowly drove by, then stopped, and began to reverse.
My stomach felt like it was doing some sort of crazy gymnastics routine inside my abodomen.
The car was some sort of faded red Cadillac that was apparent to have had owners who weren't too kind to it, and inside was an older Mexican man with a cowboy hat, and a passenger whose face I couldn't see. The driver had a greasy aura to him, in manner and appearance, and was softly (creepily) saying "Come on baby, get in. Come on." I got my cell phone out just in case in the next few seconds I would need to make an emergency call, and the girls told him "No" and to leave, but he was stagnant and continued to stare at us like he was contemplating about what he should do next.
All the possibilities about what could happen to us in the next few minutes flashed through my mind and I started to feel afraid, but relied on God to keep us safe. Then I told the guy, "WE SAID NO. GOODBYE." And with that, he gave us a frustrated look, and slowly drove away.
The gymnastics routine came to an end.
But, because we were feeling scared, and also because we saw a van driving our way and it stopped to talk to the guys in the red Cadillac, we decided to forget all of this countryside-photos business and just finish taking pictures at the park by my house. So we hurriedly walked towards the car when we realized how far we had actually strayed from it. Our two cars looked like tiny little beetles on the side of the road, and I was really regretting this whole idea. Three girls alone in the boonies? Dumb. Dumb. Dumb choice. What was I thinking?!
To make the walk just a little big shorter, I suggested that we walk across the tiny dirt path that separated the two swampy lagoons.
Yet, as you may speculate, was another dumb decision.
Me and my white strappy wedge sandals went first, and everything seemed dandy. The dirt wasn't too muddy, and we'd be at the cars just a little bit quicker.
But then my next step: SQUISH.
Right into pure, manure-textured swamp mud.
All the way up to my ankles and so much more.
And why did I decide to wear strappy white wedges to a countryside photo shoot?
Dumb choice # 342.
& As you may have guessed it, we ended up having to go all the way around anyway.
Three girls walking down a country road, two that look like models, and one whose short and looks to have two horse hooves for feet.
50 honks, 23 rubber-neckers and 400 hormone-enraged teen aged boy gawks later, we arrived at our cars and drove to the park where we finished our shoot. Muddy feet and all.
& all of that fuel they bought before our meeting? Scattered about the Californian country side, along with my dignity.
When I got home, I immediately ran inside, tossed the shoes, washed my feet, grabbed some baby carrots and was on my way to work, to which I was running late. (It takes about 45 minutes to get there, 30 if you speed). On my way out, my mom says "Are you sure you have to work today? Sometimes schools give the day after the 4th of July off." But I dismiss this, and tell her that they don't give luxuries like that to junior college students. So I get in my car and as I'm driving, I'm nervously munching on my carrots praying that I get to work on time. And I do, praise God.
But something looks off. Where are all the cars? I shrug my shoulders and park with the small cluster of cars that are there, and I head down the steps to the building that I work in.
Doors locked, all lights are off.
Are you kidding me?
No work today.
Even now, five hours later, I still don't know what the deal is. Really? They don't give us a spring break, which is a NORMAL vacation to have, sometimes they don't even give us certain holidays off, but they give us the day after 4th of July off? This is craziness.
Anyway, frustrated and upset, I call my boyfriend and hope that by some miracle he hasn't gone to work yet (it was 2pm and he usually goes to work at 7 or 8am) because I would have felt even worse if I had to turn around and just drive that long way back home.
And guess what? He's actually home!!!
So I went over to see him, thrilled that this trip hasn't been a complete waste of time and gas. Yay.
Funny thing is, he's always there like this when I need him. Whether he knows it or not. Every time my class has been cancelled or something like this happens, when he's typically not supposed to be home, he is. Whether he's running late, or he just decided not to go to work that day. It just always seems to work out, lucky for me.
This is the part of the day that puts my bad day streak to an end. Thankfully.
Thank you Lord for keeping us safe through it all!
After telling him my horrific story, we had tea together, and then he went off to work and I went home.
I love that about our relationship, sometimes it's so simple.
I'm having a bad day, I go see him, he makes me laugh, we have tea, and I go home feeling completely happy.
It's nice. :)
But I won't bore you with this mushy gushy stuff.
I better go tend to those shoes.
Hope you all are having happy days of good choices.