The thermometer says 76 but it feels like 90. Must not be a “dry heat”, eh?

I had to wait in line a bit to get across the southbound Mackinac Bridge yesterday. I have a commuter card but the quick lane for commuters was not open. I guess there were too many people heading south. It’s kind of amazing to think that, until I was three, you could only *get* to/from and from the Yooperland via a ferry — unless you were coming in from Wisconsin but that didn’t work too well if you were traveling to/from lower Michigan. Last week, my long-suffering, cat-herding boss actually took his family up to the city I grew up in and, not being much of a camper, he was happily surprised to find out that places like Holiday Inn Express exist up there these days. When I was a kid? Not so much. A few fancy hotels and a lot of mom and pop-type places*. Enough for those who were stalwart enough to drive 10 hours up the existing two-lane highways and cross the straits on the ferry. These days. Well. Line-up at the bridge.

Meanwhile, back on the Planet Ann Arbor… Once I read a newspaper story about a couple who regularly traveled all over the world. They were quoted to say something like, “Sooner or later you get home from Russia [or wherever] and you find yourself in the line at Meijer and you know you are home”. I knew just how they felt. I mean, the Yooperland has large fairly comprehensive grokkery stores (and Woldemort too) but it’s just different when you’re on vacation. Anyway, once when I had returned from the Yooperland, I got stuck in a line at Meijer and when the person ahead of me presented their driver’s license, it got dropped and the conveyer belt grabbed it and it got stuck under the scanner and the cashier had to call somebody with tools to take the whole thing apart and retrieve the driver’s license. I couldn’t switch to another line because all my stuff was on the conveyer belt and a couple people were behind *me*. Yup. I am home.

I left work this afternoon and my plan was to stop at the Saline Rd. Meijer, which is on my way home. I needed toilet paper (I thought, didn’t realize Mouse had bought some) and a few other things. Things were going okay until I got into a left-turn lane with a broken signal that was stuck on red. Some people knew how to deal with this (run the dern red light when it’s safe to do so) and some, well… In the end, it wasn’t pretty and I had to make a rather scary end run over one particularly indecisive driver, but I didn’t kill anyone (actually I didn’t even activate my rocket launcher — road rage, anyone?) and I did get through it. Sheeesh… I walked into Meijer and I was (at that moment) looking for *deoderant* and this over-the-top cheerful guy asked me if I NEEDED HELP!!! Duh. Do I not look like a person who spends half her life making runs to various grokkery stores? I AM A MOM!!! I GO TO GROKKERY STORES!!! FREQUENTLY! I can find deoderant, fer kee-reist. Seriously. I wasn’t nasty to him. I was just amazed that he was so cheerful. I laughed and told him no thanks and that he seemed really enthusiastic. (Who knows, maybe his wife just had a baby today, you never know.) After a few more little glitches (w-a-i-t-i-n-g bothers me even when I am NOT breaking my neck to get home from work), I made my way out through the uscan and was able to get onto the freeway without having to wait at *that* light through more than one cycle (thank you god). And life at the landfill goes on. Thank god for the uscan. Except for those times when the moment you need the cashier, he/she takes off to the bathroom or something…

* Actually “vacancy” was one of the first words I learned to read, as we drove by the neon signs at all of those old mom/pop motels. Vacancy/No Vacancy.

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