The One Where I Couldn’t Get the Car into Park 

Do you ever have a day that you could title in a similar fashion to all of the Friends episodes? Earlier this week, I was talking with some friends at work about funny (well, actually stupid) things we’ve done. I recalled the first time I traveled for work and had to rent a car. 

I landed in Providence, RI, and rented a car to drive to Cape Cod. It was late fall and I had an evening flight so it was dark outside from the moment I got in the car. I pulled out of the rental car parking lot, found I-195 East, and I was on my way to the Cape. An hour and a half later, I pulled into the hotel parking lot ready to park and check-in. However, I soon realized I had a problem…a BIG problem. The car wouldn’t go into park. Seriously, it wouldn’t go into park. So there I was, 22 years old on my first business trip hundreds of miles from home in parking spot in a rental car with my foot still on the break and not able to put it into park. After about 10 minutes of wrestling with the gear shift, I took both hands and threw my entire body weight into it and shoved the car into park.

You would think that would have been enough for one night for little ol’ me. Nope! I was hungry so I ventured out and to find dinner. I drove down the road to the Friendly’s I passed on my way in, threw the car into park again, ordered take-out, got back in the car, drove back to the hotel, and threw the car into park for yet a third time that night.

I actually met another colleague at the hotel the next morning and he drove to the test site for the following two days. I couldn’t have been happier. I didn’t want to have to deal with the gear shift anymore than I had to. At the end of the second day, we finished early so I decided to be brave and take my rental car out for a little sight seeing. When I got into the car, it was the first time I had been in it during daylight hours. I looked down at the gear shift, and in fine print that can only be read during daylight hours, it read “press down to shift gears.” I stared at it for a moment and had one of those “how about that” moments. Then I tried it out, and what do you know, it worked like a charm!

As it has turned out, I have many interesting stories like this from traveling, but I think this is the funniest!

Oh and one other thing….Taylor may refer to a similar experience in book 2!