Well, going to an auction is often an adventure. This last one, though, was more than I had bargained for.
First of all, it was being held at what must, surely, have been the last–or nearly the last–farm in Aurora. I saw a sign –kind of faded–that seemed to indicate that this was once the location of a working sugarbush . There was at least one good-sized barn and a TON of cars and trucks of all sorts and sizes parked all along Townline Rd., stretching nearly to the horizon where the pavement went up and over a hill. Vehicles were parked all along the west side of the road; there were signs on the other side directing attendees NOT to park there. Any utility driveway or flat space was being used as a parking area and there was a driveway heading off through a field with a warning sign saying “4-wheel drive only”…an omen if I ever saw one.
So…I’m inching along–on the EAST side of the road–wondering if this was going to turn out to be a fool’s errand (another omen) and trying to avoid sliding into the rather substantial ditch there whenever a car approached from the opposite direction, when I noticed a sort of public-access driveway–filled with cars and trucks, of course–which made me think that there might be something of the same nature a little farther along. And, indeed, it was so. Eureka!
There were trucks parked there, blocking a sign of some kind next to an antique red-brick building, and I thought that my little car would fit (It IS a Fit) in the faint driveway to the right with no trouble and the other parkers would be able to get out just fine. (Cue the music of DOOM from any scary movie that you like, from “Zombie Apocalypse” to “Jaws” or “The Creature from the Black Lagoon”)
You know that cynical little aphorism that goes, “No good deed goes unpunished”? Here’s an illustration.
I pull in, spot an open space to the left and figure that if I just pull in there and back around onto the driveway area to be heading out, everyone would be able to exit the location and everything would be–to coin a phrase–hunkey-dorey. Sure it would.
Unfortunately, this open space was just recently thawed and hadn’t a whisper of gravel underneath the grass that had looked so promising. When I pulled onto it–with a front-wheel drive car–things went rapidly downhill…literally. The wheels sank in; forward was just as bad as reverse. And there we were. Not going anyplace for a while.
A nice man came along and informed me that this spot–not just the one I was in–belonged to the Cleveland Chapter of the Audubon Society (Remember the sign on the other side of the trucks?) and NOBODY was supposed to park here. Ooops! This gentleman attempted to push my little orange chariot out of the ruts we were in, to no avail. We even hailed a passing auction-goer from the road to give it another try but with the drive wheels spinning in the mud, not much was happening in that respect. Nice of both of these guys, since they didn’t know me from Adam’s off-ox. Then the police arrived.
Yup, Aurora’s finest pulled up and pointed out that no one was supposed to park there and, after listening to my explanations of stupidity, gave me the number of F&S Automotive. Well, thank goodness. Fall & Stebbins know what they’re about and would get me out of here. Pull out the cell phone that I have for just such occasions and hope that it’s charged(When you keep a cell phone just for emergencies and don’t have very many, it’s fairly likely to go AWOL every so often). Hallelujah! Wonders never cease.
I explained the situation to the pleasant person on the other end of the line and soon a big truck was threading its way up the road.
When the big truck arrived, a big guy got out of it, surveyed the situation, listened to my second recital of the problem–as if he couldn’t see it for himself–and hooked the bumper or something more substantial to his winch. Then he sloooowly pulled my little limo out of the ruts it had dug for itself. There was a considerable sucking sound (as Ross Perot would say) as the car came free, which was echoed when I signed for the–quite reasonable, under the circumstances– bill (Aren’t credit cards wonderful?). The big guy (Roger # it said on the slip) said that on the way over he had heard distant revving sounds coming from the “4-wheelers only” area, so he may have received another call or two later on.
So, did I make the best of a bad day and go home? Ha! I parked in back of the trucks and went off.
I trudged down the road to the auction site, signed in at the KIKO trailer and made another discovery…or rediscovery, actually, since I certainly must have known that going to a farmyard in the Spring called for BOOTS and not just work shoes. Alas, a cursory glance revealed that there wasn’t much that I might be interested in, guns not being on my wish list, and farm equipment not likely to fit in the car. Of course, all of the good stuff might have been snapped up while I was stuck in the mud…the story of my life.
The best part of the day was when I stopped at the bakery on the way home; no bidding but some great sweet rolls!