Truth be told I don’t have a lot of fitness stories lately. I did go to Zumba on Friday and I did do a hiking event with the dog Sat, but that’s all. Since we just covered the extent of my health in 1 sentence, I will now share a random tale of my life. Since everyone is chattering about the NYC Marathon, I thought it was a good time to share my own NYC story.
When I was in my early 20’s one of my best friends was attending a school in Connecticut. The worst part wasn’t the distance, it was spelling Connecticut. We became best friends in the 6th grade and having him be away sucked majorly. However, I made the drive to see him and he was home a lot due to having family in the area. One of the times I went up, we decided it would be fun to take the train into NYC. I had never been and it seemed like a grand adventure. I LOVE ADVENTURES!
I arrived on campus late Friday afternoon. We had enough time to eat and settle down, and I met one of his friends. A wonderful girl who was studying abroad and was only in town for the weekend because her own plans fell through or something. I should mention it was a holiday weekend, maybe Labor Day? I don’t recall.
The next morning we were running late as is our style (ha) and as we were leaving for the train station, my friend realized he left his keys in the dorm room door. Yes, real keys and a real door. Given this was a very nice school and the craziest thing that could ever happen was pulling an all-nighter to study, I convinced him not to worry. We arrived a few hours later in NYC.
Honestly, I don’t remember too much of my time there. We saw Central Park, which wasn’t as impressive as I imagined it would be (sorry). All the buildings looked the same! I expected to be able to notice the major landmarks so easily, but nope, they just blend into the ups and downs, greys, silvers and blacks of all the other structures.
One thing I recall is seeing Times Square. I loved seeing the bright lights and advertising. I loved walking in and out of the shops. It felt like I was in my own movie. A store I wish I could have stayed in longer was the Toys R Us store with a giant ferris wheel.
My friend convinced me I was “too old” to be playing with the toys. I find this concept funny. Yes at some point in your 20’s many people start deciding they’re “too old” for some things. Yet now as I approach my 30’s my thinking has changed. Who cares what other people think? If playing with the giant Barbie house makes me happy, who are they to judge? Let me at it, I have a tea party to host!
After an all day and into the night adventure we ventured to the train station to go home. As we were waiting for our train (which was approaching any moment) I had the great idea to buy some gifts for people. I took my credit-card (not even my whole purse) and walked to the gift shop. I left my purse, keys and probably my cell phone with my friend.
Inside the shop I heard the “last call” for our train and hauled ass. I didn’t see him in the waiting area, I didn’t see him near the train. Near tears the boarding agent told me it was the last train of the night, he probably boarded and I should too.
Of course after a few moments it was clear he was NOT on the train too. I am rather certain this is when I had my first panic attack. Although looking back I was probably having syncope because of my WPW. I lay across several train seats, convinced my heart was going to explode and I would die. I cried and cried and tried to explain what happened. The people on the train were nice enough not to kick me off for not having my ticket, but they weren’t completely nice. They did yell (yes actually yell) at me that if I wanted to “play house” I should do it on my own time. Because obviously a guy and a girl can’t be “just friends”. Jerks.
Now here’s where it gets trippy. I arrived back in his town, and because I had my credit card, I was able to get a taxi back to the school. This is good since he had my keys, rendering my car useless. Try looking at your car an not being able to access it, not a good feeling. Next issue? His campus is secured! You need a current student to escort you. Luckily I had met one of his friends, remember? I said I was there to see her. Security called and wouldn’t you know it, she was awake at this odd hour and immediately played along. She came and picked me up at the guard shack and as we walked back I told her what happened. I think we were trying to figure out if I should stay with her for the night. Haha. Then I remembered something! The keys were left in the door!
We walked to my friend’s room and I let myself inside. Honestly, as I walked through the door, his phone was ringing. I still don’t know why I thought I should answer HIS dorm phone, but I did. It was my friend on the other end. Such a wave of relief when I heard his voice. We both had a good laugh about how I managed to get back with some many happy coincidences. The next morning he took the first available train, I took another taxi to the station and we drove back together.
And this is why I never want to be away from my purse, keys, or cell phone.