The parts manager at Molle Toyota could not find the order for the Prius because they still have the car listed under my mother-in-law’s name. I stood at the counter for about 20 minutes while he ran various checks. I had told both the person who took the order and the man who admitted me to the inner sanctum that the vehicle’s service record was under another name, but no one had communicated this salient fact to the person searching for my license plate bracket.
I shifted from foot to foot, engaging him in small talk. I finally prompted him to try Joanna’s name — bingo. When they rang the ticket, he had applied a 10% discount which he said arose from his appreciation of my patience.
An hour later, I listened to someone telling me that my glasses were crooked, from compassion and concern about my visual acumen. I pushed them a bit further up on my button nose and smiled. I am aware that I look ridiculous much of the time and am starting to find the fact amusing.
Tonight I took those crooked glasses off and scrounged in my closet for an old pair. I donned them and stood in front of the mirror, thinking that I can see a bit better, noticing that the lenses in this pair are larger and my eyes more obvious. I think about the lady who replaced my drivers license once, after hours of telling me that it could not be done because I could not prove my identity. My wallet, with license, Social Security card, and every other form of ID, had been stolen. I finally called a friend in Jeff City who told me about a process whereby you paid $2.00 and the DMV faxed a copy of your license to the local office. If you match the photo, you get a duplicate.
I stormed back into the office to confront the woman with my knowledge, and she admitted both having been aware of the procedure and not have shared that knowledge with me. I coldly plunked two one-dollar bills on the counter, and gave her my information. A few minutes later, she returned with a grainy copy of my driver’s license in black, white and grey tones.
What color are your eyes? she asked. I told her “grey”. She stared at me with slightly open mouth. No, they’re not; they’re BLUE, she snapped.
I finally lost it and retorted, Well, if you already KNEW, why did you ask?
I walked out of there with a new driver’s license and high blood pressure.
It’s taken me twenty-two years to get to the point at which I’m rewarded for my patience with a courtesy discount. But I’m not complaining. I’m just grateful that I’ve gotten here with as few scars as I bear from tongue-lashings along the way.