Now. Before you judge me and make a wisecrack about woman drivers, allow me to present my photographic defense that this was not entirely my fault:
My trusty little SUV would be pictured right and that white car? That would belong to a dentist's wife who decided to park 3 feet over the flippin' line because she was in too much of a hurry to walk her big ol' poofy dog around the upscale shopping "town." No judgement. I love dogs (not so much dentists, though I appreciate healthy teeth) and I do so enjoy walking around the shops myself. It's lovely.
That said, I was minding my own business. Little and I had enjoyed the weather by the fountains where kids play in the water and I had fed her a bottle. It was time to go to her pediatrician appointment so we headed back to the car. I put Little in her car seat, got inside. I put the car in reverse, checked over my shoulder for traffic and let the car back out naturally in the path it had taken in. Which would have been fine had a certain someone's car not been parked so drunken-like in the neighboring space. But it wasn't and CRUNCH.
I'm pretty sure I dropped the f-bomb, which definitely shows my surprise by the sound of the metal on metal--or are most cars fiberglass or plastic now? I have cleared up my "pirate mouth," as the Hubs call it for Little's sake. Except for when Mrs. No-Time-To-Straighten-My-Car-Because-I-Have-Shopping-To-Do decided she had to, had to have the space next to me and evidently pulled in from the wrong direction.
This would have been bad enough had there not been spectators. After crunching into the tail end of Mrs. Rodeo Drive's car and dropping the f-bomb in the presence of my newborn's innocent ears, this woman sitting on the bench in front of the spaces, drops her jaw and visibly gasps in disbelief of what she's just witnessed.
I pulled back into the space, parked, and checked on my baby. She was fine and seemingly unaware (and not babbling profanities in imitation of her mommy). Then I checked the damage on the other car. It wasn't terrible. I believe what made it look worse was the black paint from my poor little Vue being hastily scraped off. There wasn't even a dent on her car.
I pulled out my phone and tried the Hubs to get his input on what I should do, but he wasn't picking up so I proceeded to search the car for a pen so I could leave a note. Which I couldn't find. Not in the diaper bag, not on the passenger chair, I could not find a pen anywhere. (Dr. Seuss, I am not.) Appropriately, and perhaps to make it abundantly clear to the traumatized woman that I was not going to hit and run, I had to ask her for a pen. She made a stink out of the fact that whoever the driver was would not pleased to come out and see his Lexus smashed to pieces.
Yes, she said that and yes, it was, in fact, a Lexus. Perfect.
At that point, she asked about damage on the Vue. (This only slightly improved my impression of her.) I answered honestly that I hadn't even checked. She followed me to investigate and she gasped slightly less dramatically at the "damage" on the Lexus. Flustered by the whole ordeal and wanting to appease this woman, I jotted a name and number* down on the paper I had grabbed from my car and handed her the pen back, thanking her a little more profusely than I needed to. She took her time walking away in a bewildered stupor. (I suspect she'll need counseling for post-traumatic stress.)
At this point, another spectator who had been chatting with a friend across the driveway ran over to me and told me to be sure to get a photo of how far over the car was parked. Up until this point, I hadn't even paid attention. I was distracted by the fact that I had just backed into a Lexus and I couldn't imagine what the insurance bill would be, regardless of if there was much damage.
The Hubs called me back or I called him again, obsessively--I can't remember. Anyways, I told him what happened and asked what I should do. He quickly told me he'd check with our police officer friend and call me back. I hung up and stood on the passenger side waiting for him to call me back or the driver to return. I glanced on the floor and there was my leather legal pad holder, complete with a pen. Figures.
It was about this time that the driver in question appeared, loaded her giant foofy dog in the back seat, and started to get in her car. I stopped her and told her what happened and apologized whole-heartedly, while silently pleading that she not make a huge stink out of it. She wasn't horribly upset, but after a few minutes, she asked about calling the police. I told her my husband and I knew a police officer and my husband was calling him to find out what to do. I said this to be helpful, but she sort of turned at that point, insisting on me handing her my driver's license. I might have also pointed out the fact that her car was 3 feet over the line...
The Hubs called back and said that the police can't do anything because it's private property and in these cases, you can go through insurance or small claims court. I told him she wanted my driver's license and he agreed that there was no reason for that. We should exchange insurance information and be done with it.
I relayed this on to the no good, very bad parker, who was on hold for the police. I waited as she told them her tire was "maybe 3 inches across the line" and I tried to keep myself from correcting her, though I did make a point out of taking another photo to get my point across. She hung up with the same conclusion. I told her we should exchange insurance and contact information. It was a little tense with our disagreement over just how bad of a parker she was and she gave me a hard time again about my license. I jotted down my name, phone number and insurance information on a fresh sheet of paper in plain view and showed her as I copied the policy number and everything down that it was legit. (*Admittedly, I had put down a fake name and number on the other sheet, but stricken with a guilty conscience, balled up the paper before she had arrived.) Little fussed at this point, just long enough to soften up Mrs. Lexus to say "Ohh, you have a baby?" She came up empty for an insurance card, but gave me her husband's business card and wrote her name and phone number on it. She guiltily mentioned the car was his.
I apologized again and told her I'd rather deal with things without going through insurance and she agreed. She thanked me for being honest, that it was good karma, and that they'd had other people plow into them and drive off or leave fake info (insert guilt here).
Thankfully that was the last we've heard from her. Unfortunately, the incident left the Vue with another "beauty mark." The other one was from pulling into my tricky corner parking spot late at night at my old condo. Anyone who attempted the maneuver would tell you it was a wonder I didn't hit the carport pole more than just the one time.
Next time, on "This one time, on maternity leave...", the time I accidentally shoplifted.