Those of you who know me at all probably know that I'm quite the homebody, especially on the weekends. I'm an introvert and the necessary socialization of the work week always drains me, so I usually stay home and recharge on the weekends.
Add to that the fact that I'm now living on my own and responsibly for getting myself anywhere I care to go, and it's a wonder I ever set foot out of the apartment on weekends at all. I'm still not completely comfortable with driving, and driving in areas I'm not familiar with really stresses me out. Today was Exhibit A as to why.
Yesterday, as a reward for buckling down and getting 1500 words written, I decided to reward myself by going to see Coraline today. I checked the Fandango schedule and planned to go to the first showing, at 11 am. And then 11 rolled around and my homebody instincts kicked in and through a series of excuses and rationalizations, I ended up not getting out the door, and scolding myself for it. So I decided to go to the next showing, at 1:40, and when 1:00 rolled around, I did actually drag my ass out the door.
There's a movie theater about a mile down the road, but it's smack in the middle of the downtown area, which means streets are busy and parking is non-existant. I knew that would stress me out and possibly even compel me to just stay home, so I decided to go to the movie theater one city over, where (I assumed) there would be a parking lot.
I didn't realize until I was driving past it (following the instructions of my lovely TomTom GPS, Aenghus) that this movie theater was also in a downtown area. At least this one had a parking structure across the street, but I had to circle the block twice before I managed to get to it.
Anyway, I parked, got my ticket, got in, that was fine. Although Mistake #2 was deciding to go to a midday showing of a newly-released children's movie. It was crowded, full of kids, and noisy, and I started feeling very claustrophobic, closed in on all sides by a bunch of strangers. Things settled down and were fine once the movie started, though.
(The verdict on the movie: Very fun, funny, gorgeous visuals, and creepy as hell. I highly recommend it.)
Then, Mistake #3. I thought, "Hey, I'm in Pleasant Hill anyway, and according to their website, there's a Jo Ann's ((fabric store)) just down the street. I'll stop there and pick up some materials for a new project before I head home."
Most of the time, I really really love Aenghus. If nothing else, he gives me the confidence to go out and make mistakes, because if worse comes to worst, I can always use him to find my way home. Sometimes, though, he drives me bugfuck crazy. This afternoon was one of those times. I ended up in the parking lot of an autobody shop, in the right general location but with no Jo Ann's in sight.
Long story short -- an hour and a half later, I finally made it to a Jo Ann's.
Note I said a Jo Ann's. Not the one I was originally looking for, which I'm pretty sure has disappeared off the face of the earth. (No, seriously. There was a different shop with it's supposed building number and everything.)
Then I got to try to find my way back home, which was an adventure I don't care to ever repeat, involving piss-poor directions, getting on the wrong on-ramp, getting off again in an area I'd never seen before in my life, and an unexpected hairpin turn at a ridiculously unsafe speed.
All in all, I was never more than six miles from home, and it took me over two hours to get back here. Only about 15 minutes of that was actually spent in the fabric store.
Next weekend, I am so staying home.