You should know, before I begin to tell this story about my adventures at Scotiabank Place last night with my brother, that he did not want me to tell you about this.
He did not want me to tell anyone about it. He said it makes us both look really REALLY stupid.
I prefer, now, 12 hours later, to find the humour in it, and share with all of you. I mean, if you can’t make fun of yourself, then you’re taking life too seriously, right?
So. My brother Luke & I went to the Sens game last night. Game 3 of the Round 1 playoff series vs. the New York Rangers. We travelled to the Bank in my little Rav 4, and by the time we got there, about 45 minutes before game time, the place was already a zoo.
Luke chose to park in parking lot #9. I usually park in lot #5 or #6. Please keep this in mind for future reference. I was extremely unfamiliar with this parking area that he stuck me in.
We made our way through the Red Zone outside, into the building, and the atmosphere was electric. As we slowly made our way up the steps to the 2nd and 3rd level concourse, a thunderous “GO SENS GO” chant went up, and I’ve never heard anything so loud and exhilarating in my life. It raised the hairs on the back of my neck in excitement.
The Sens played an amazing game – their best game so far in these playoffs. They carried the play, dominated the Rangers, and did everything – absolutely everything – but score.
When the Rangers finally potted one mid-way through the 3rd period, taking the 1-0 lead, I had this terribly anxious feeling that luck was not on our side this night, no matter how badly we were out-playing and out-chancing them.
As the final horn sounded, we rose from our seats, disappointed, but proud of our team for playing so well, and as satisfied as we could be with one of the most exciting, action-packed games I’ve ever been to… despite the loss.
Then we went out to the parking lot.
And then we couldn’t find my car.
We wandered around a bit, still discussing the game, and chuckling occasionally about how my car had disappeared. “Like, seriously…where the hell is it?”
It was funny for about 2 minutes. Where, oh where, could you be, little Rav? I laughed and said, “It’s a very distinct looking vehicle, Luke – it should be jumping right out at us!”
He quipped that as the owner of the vehicle, I shouldn’t have any trouble spotting it. I countered that he was also very familiar with my little white Rav with black trim and roof racks. I’m telling you, it’s DISTINCT. And he has better eyes than I have. Look HARDER, Lukey!
As we stomped up and down the aisles of parked cars in the area we thought we had parked in, I started to get a little worried. And the search became even more difficult as the mass exodus of the parking lot began, and cars started zig-zagging in line-ups to get out all over the place.
I might have started to panic. Just a little. And I might have suggested that perhaps my car had been stolen? Luke thought this theory was HIGHLY entertaining. “Yeah. Sure. Out of alllllll the cars in this parking lot, the thieves are going to pick a dirty, slightly rusting ‘97 Rav 4? And steal it in broad daylight, surrounded by all these people? I don’t think so, Jill.”
The more we walked aimlessly around, the more stressed out I became. Like, on-the-verge-of-tears-stressed-out. I just kept saying, “What are we going to DO?!” Luke was getting a little annoyed with me, and his stress level was also starting to show, as he’d snap back, “RELAX. It’s here somewhere, we’re going to find it!!!”
Obviously, we were starting to stand out to others hanging out in the parking lot by their cars, enjoying a post-game pop rather than joining the slow-moving fray. As we passed one group of guys leaning against their car, one of them called out, “Hey guys, just wait for the parking lot to clear out a bit. You’ll find your car.”
So now, on top of being extremely worried, panicked, and maybe starting to hyperventilate a little bit, I’m also terribly embarrassed.
Seriously. How can someone LOSE A CAR???
At this point, we decided to climb the big grassy bank at the back-end of the parking lot, and survey the situation from above, see if we could spot it from higher-up. Luke marched up and down the bank, while I stayed in one spot, praying my car would just magically appear.
It did not. So we went back down the steep bank, and of course I fell on my arse.
Of COURSE I did.
By now, after what felt like an hour of searching, I was suggesting calling the police, convinced that my car had somehow, mysteriously, inexplicably, been stolen. Luke was refusing to go that far yet. But his confidence was starting to waver as well, and when he finally admitted, “K, I’m starting to get a little worried",” I was in full-on panic mode.
WHAT THE HELL ARE WE GOING TO DO?!?!?!??!?!
It finally did help that the parking lot had emptied out quite a bit during our fevered search for my car. And I finally decided to meander over to a section of the lot that we had already established we had not parked in, because we thought it was too far away.
And lo and behold, there she was. My good ol’ Rav. Sitting right there, waiting for us.
I could have kissed it. Hallelujah!!!
Oh, but this long and winding story does not end there, my friends.
After we got in the car and joined a line-up of cars exiting the parking lot, people started honking. And after they honked a few times, we realized they were honking at us. We had no idea why, until the guys in the car behind us started shouting, “TOYOTA RAV 4!!! YOUR GAS TANK IS OPEN!!!”
Over and over and over.
See, one day last week, the piece that covers my gas tank stopped latching shut. It just sort of flaps in the wind now. Apparently this greatly concerned these people behind us. They would not stop shouting and honking at us.
I ended up rolling down my window and roaring, “WE KNOWWWWWWW!!!!” Which, of course, made my brother mad, and he told me to shut up.
I was seriously about to unravel, people. And then – THEN – one of the guys actually got out of his car when we came to a full stop and tried shutting it for me. SERIOUSLY.
IT’S BROKEN, DOOFUS, GET BACK IN YOUR DAMNED CAR AND LEAVE MINE ALONE!!!!
When we finally broke free from the traffic jam that is the Scotiabank Place parking lot post-game, I was finally able to breathe again.
Unbelievable. This kind of thing can only happen to me.
So. This was long. And a little crazy. And my brother’s probably now really mad at me for making our little adventure public knowledge.
But I hope that if you’re still reading, you’re at least smiling. It’s okay if you’re laughing.
Because, honestly? If it was anyone else, I’d laugh at them too. ;)