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Monday, 20 August 2012

Who Put the Apple on My Car?

By Jackie Harrison

Remember the song, Who Put The Overalls In Mrs. Murphy's Chowder? I want to know who put the apple on my car.

I know I am getting old but I like to adopt my mother's words who in her nineties said, "At least I still have my mind." I am excluding my absent-mindedness, however, since it has existed for as long as I can remember.

Getting lost has been one of my life-long problems. I believe it is due to my inattentiveness. My children tease me about it and I laughingly say, "Well, I can always be found."

I often visit my sister in Georgia using the same roads for each trip. Once, I was driving there with my mind wandering as it usually does when I am alone. Before I knew what was happening, I found myself driving through Denmark and Sweden, small towns in Georgia that I had never heard of before this trip.

I apologized to my sister for being late and explained my late arrival by saying, "I have been traveling all over Europe.”

Another time when I visited my sister, I walked right through the door, suitcase in hand, of her neighbor's house thinking it was my sister's house on this circular drive. I was too young then to be accused of having Alzheimer's.

My family lived in Galveston, Texas, for one year. One morning while living there, I put my children in the car and drove off to the store. It was only when I reached the store that I realized I had left my purse on the top of my car.

Almost a year later, back in Daytona Beach, Florida, I received my purse in the mail. It came from Mexico.

This is why I ignore my current "mental lapses" and refuse to blame them on my age.

In my condominium, I often go for days without seeing anyone on the elevators. The elevator usually travels straight to my eighteenth floor where I automatically get off when it stops.

One day, the elevator stopped on the seventeenth floor. I walked around the corner as usual to where my unit is located. When I reached the door and inserted the key, the lock would not turn. My arms were full of packages and I was already exhausted from a busy day. All I wanted to do was rest.

I twisted the key repeatedly, even shaking the door. I put my packages on the floor and began this routine all over again. Still no luck. Finally I gave up. I didn't know what I was going to do.

I decided I had no choice but to contact the manager. I prayed that she was home. When I reached the elevator, I happened to look up and see, Floor 17. I wanted to hide. "What if those owners had been inside?" I thought. "What if I destroyed their lock."

I hurried to my apartment and inserted the key. It turned easily. However, when I tried to remove it, I could not. Even pliers would not help. At this point, I resorted to my Scarlett O'Hara act, "Tomorrow is another day," and left it there.

I usually put my groceries in the trunk of my car. On more than one occasion, a cantaloupe has rolled out of the bag and landed out of sight in the far back of the trunk. After once leaving a cantaloupe there for a week, I have made a habit of searching the trunk carefully for rolling objects like oranges, apples and cantaloupes before I close it.

That is the reason I became disturbed recently when I was putting away my groceries and discovered I was a missing an apple. I was certain I had bought two. I began to think I had forgotten to check my trunk. I went back to my car to look. No apple!

"Perhaps I only bought one apple," I thought. I had already thrown away my grocery stub so I couldn't check. Regardless of whether an apple was missing or I forgot and bought only one, I decided the matter was not worth fretting about so I dismissed it. This was on Friday.

On Sunday morning when I went to my car to head for church, there was an apple sitting on the top of my car. To this day I have no idea who put it there or who knew it was my apple.

[INVITATION: All elders, 50 and older, are welcome to submit stories for this blog. They can be fiction, non-fiction, poetry, memoir, etc. Please read instructions for submitting.]

Posted by Ronni Bennett at 05:30 AM | Permalink | Email this post


OH, yes. Been there, done that. Hubby's shoes on top of the car when he arrived at the pizza pick-up. I put a Xmas present on top of mine--the outer box was part of the present, but not after it landed in the middle of the road!
The latest: I hang my cane on the car doorknob when I get out to take pics.Somewhere on Rte. 9, there is a cane. They may still be looking for a little old lady or gent to go with it!

I think this all makes life at our ages sooo much fun. It is really not boring, sort of like a great puzzle we have been given. I think God is teasing and joking with us.
After all, what other age could he be so comfortable with, so he uses us for his playtime.

I remember a similar experience I had. I used to throw my purse behind the seat on the floor in my old Volkswagen. One day when I got home, no purse. I called the store and asked if anyone found a purse in the parking lot, and lucky for me some nice person turned it in intact. I sure learned a lesson I hope I never forget. It's fun reading stories by others for then it jags our memories also. We older folks have so much to tell, thanks.

Was it the same kind of apple? I'll be thinking about this all day trying to get to the core of this matter.

Sat a cup of coffee on the running board of the fire truck at the fire scene. Forgot about it, but it was still there when we got back to the fire house, but then it had a flat bottom.

Glad you remembered all these instances to share with us.

This is a great story! I have had many similar instances! I found my car keys under the sink with the paper towels, went to a movie instead of my part time job, and many others! Thanks for sharing.

This is a great little series of vignettes. And what a cool structure... could be the perfect story

Funny, funny. Glad to know someone else has had a full life of forgetfullness like that. Enjoyed your little stories.

When people get to talking about their memory lapses like you Jackie I am able to say "Oh I always have had a bad memory - but in fact it may be getting better" - and I think that's true because like you I have learned all sorts of strategies to help so that my 'lapses' aren't dramatic enough to start people worrying!

Well, if you had to go through Atlanta to reach your sister that explains it all.

I went to a great deal of difficulty to get a deal on a then new tech item that was expensive -- a transistor radio. This was the birthday present I gave my new husband. Later that week we prepared to drive to his alma mater's horseshoe shaped football field for a game. He wanted to simultaneously listen to the radio broadcast while we sat in our really good midline seats. I was in charge of the radio, our bleacher seats, blankets, coffee thermos -- maybe other stuff. Speeding down the road, I suddenly realized the radio was missing. I recalled carefully placing it on top of the car so it wouldn't get lost as I loaded everything else. We stopped the car. Of course, the radio wasn't there. We drove back, slowly scouring the roadway and side of the road, but never spotted it. I was heartsick.

Though it was extravagant, since we had just purchased our first house, I contacted my husband's friend, again, (though I knew him only casually -- he later-became actress Beverly DeAngelo's dad) -- to please get me another deal on a transistor radio for my husband -- he graciously did.

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