And trust me, I had a lot of time to think about it. Like hours. And hours. As I walked... home... from the airport. Yesterday.
See the thing is, I do have fatal flaws. Lots. And I can't blame just one for this whole fiasco. If it had been just one, I could've dealt with that. I could've overcome it somehow. This was more like all of my worst traits conspiring together to leave me with sore feet and hips and a wicked, lopsided sunburn. (Lopsided because it's only on my right side, which was the side facing west as I walked mostly south in the afternoon heat.)
Anyway, back to my flaws. Or maybe I should go back to how this all started.
What happened is last week I flew home to visit my family in California. And I had an awesome time. So glad I went. But my dad thought that it would be a good idea to have our mechanic friend fix my car while I was gone since I obviously wouldn't be driving it from states away. And it was a good idea. Except that our mechanic friend is not the most reliable person on the planet to begin with. Plus he has cancer and so with one thing and another and being in the hospital, he wasn't really able to finish working on my car. I totally get it. Cancer sucks. And I feel bad for the guy. It's not his fault that I walked home. It's mine.
Because what I should've done is arranged for a backup ride. And I sort of did. I just forgot to follow up on it and so then I felt like it was too late to call someone as I was landing at the airport and be all, "Hey, uh... can you pick me up, like now?"
So this is the part when we get to my flaws. There are many. Probably even more than I'm about to list. But each one on this list somehow contributed to my inability to do anything but walk the twelve miles home from the Provo airport to my apartment in Springville.
I swear, it was the only option.
You'll see why.
1. Stubborn independence. I hate needing people. If I can't do it myself, it's almost always not worth doing.
2. Pride. (See above.)
3. A phobia of talking on the telephone. There has got to be a word for this. Does anyone know what it is? I'm too lazy to look it up. Whatever the word is, I've got it. I will not talk on the phone unless I really, really like you or I'm at work and this is a business call. I don't even call pizza delivery people. I'd rather go in personally and wait the twenty minutes while they make my pizza.
4. Asceticism. I know the word for this one. ;) Basically it means I get a little bit high off of denying myself pleasures I actually want. Probably why I don't have a TV. Or internet. Or a couch. I really want a couch today.
5. An overdeveloped sense of adventure. I blame being a writer. Or maybe being a writer just gives me an excuse. Anyway, I've always loved disasters. Even as a kid, I was gleeful when the power went out. It's something out of the ordinary, you know? It's exciting!
6. A wistful desire to lose weight. Yes, I have this desire now. I'm sort of maybe working on it. I'll keep you posted. But it was enough of a factor for me to think, "Twelve miles? Do you even know how many calories that would burn?" In like an excited way.
7. Passive aggression/Being a martyr. I... yeah... There was a little part of me that wanted to punish my dad for not finding a more reliable mechanic and insisting I use this guy. It's an ongoing battle, actually. And I guess it's fitting that since it wasn't really my dad's fault, he wasn't really the one who got punished. Mostly I did. By the sunburn that's still flaming hot 30 hours later and is still giving me some sort of heatstroke-ish headache.
8. Extreme frugality. I totally could've afforded the cabs at the airport. I'm not that destitute. Granted, at that point, so early on, I was mostly walking because I was mad. I didn't really intend to walk the whole way. And then I could've called a cab later on, but... see number 3.
9. Reluctance to make close--local--friends (the kind you could ask for a ride home from the airport, even on a holiday). I do have those kinds of friends. Just not here. I'm going to work on that. Probably.
10. An ingrained hesitation about taking rides from strangers. I really should've. Twice people pulled over to ask if I was okay. But... I... It's the stubborn independence again, really. It's a curse.
But yes, twelve miles is totally a do-able walk. I'm already thinking I should plan a hike of that length or longer sometime soon. But this next time I'm bringing a backpack instead of a purse and I'm wearing sunscreen and I'm going to bring a water bottle and snacks and stuff. And I definitely won't be hiking along any busy roads or dusty industrial areas.
And I might wait until my sunburn fades to a nice tan.
Oh, who am I kidding? I don't tan. With my luck it will all peel off and I'll be left with brand new skin that's even whiter than before.
I guess that's just one more fatal flaw to add to my list.