Okay… there’s no need to panic. It is only a minor glitch, just a small inconvenience, everything will be okay. The car will start, I will drive out of this slippery, snow-packed parking lot, and I will get home in one piece.
Well… I can hope, can’t I?
Crossing my fingers, as I’m turning the key in the ignition, I attempt to start the engine of the ‘98 Hyundai Accent GS, but again there is still nothing. Not a sound.
Fuck! Now I can panic.
I look out the windshield, wishing my friend’s piece of shit car would start so I didn’t have to go out into the blizzard of wind and snow. Now that the snow is coming down even harder -if that was even possible- and from what I’ve heard on the radio this morning the temperature would only reach a high of 22 degrees. Whatever that temperature is.
So… with a deep breath and much reluctance I get out of the car and make a run for a nearby cover of the United Center arena. Knowing that I can’t leave the car stranded in the near empty parking lot, I call for a tow truck, then call my friend about her car. As I'm doing that, I notice a woman leaving the building. Walking rather briskly, stumbling through the slush, making her way to her car. Still oblivious to there being a couple of other doors right behind me, I abruptly get hit from behind, just as I finish dialling the number for the tow truck.
The hit was enough to make me lose my balance but somehow, the person that was on the other side of the door caught me before I fell down to the cold, hard concrete. Still with my cell phone up against my ear, I look up and over my shoulder, I see this tall, good looking and apparently well-built guy, who still has his arm wrapped around me. I don’t know if it was -and I hope it wasn’t- a horrified look that I might have had on my face but he quickly pulled his arm away and stepped aside.
“I’m sorry… I…” he apologizes, raising his hands in surrender.
“Hey, you know what,” I quickly interrupt, “it’s okay… I’m fine.” closing my phone and shoving it into my pocket. “Thank-you.“ I added.
“I'm sorry.” he apologized again, “I should have paid more attention to where I was going.”
“Like I said,” looking him over, “it’s okay. Besides I didn’t get hurt.”
“But you could have been.” he paused while looking at me sympathetically, “Really though… I mean… well… it is some bad weather out here and this ice...”
After a moment of silence between us, he broke it by asking,
“Would you like to go out for a coffee we me some time? Just because, well, I'd like to make it up to you.”
“Sure, that would be great.” eagerly agreeing to his offer with a little more enthusiasm than I expected.
“Good. Okay, uh…” stumbling, excitedly on his words.
“You have a pen?” I ask, noticing he’s trying to find a way to ask for my number.
“Umm,” he’s patting down his pockets searching for a pen. “Here.” He finds one in the inside pocket of his dress jacket.
I take the pen, grab his hand and write out my number.
“Call me.” giving him the best smile I could muster, before I turned to walk back toward the car.
“Hey..." he called, reaching out and lightly laying his hand on my arm, "I didn’t get your name. My name’s Jonathan.”
“My name is Julia.”
“Thank-you.” I gush, feeling my face becoming a new shade of red, ultimately creating a small crooked smile to come across his face.
With that slight embarrassment of not introducing myself earlier, I headed back towards the car, and with one last look back in his direction as I reach for the door handle, he smiles, waves, and steps back into the arena.
I get into the car and I find myself ecstatic! I have just given my number to Jonathan Toews! The Captain of the Chicago Blackhawks. Now with a rather large smile plastered across my face, I try to start the car, then I remember as I turn the key, that it doesn't start.
So I take out my sudden anger on the steering wheel. Throwing a couple punches and yelling out some more words of profanity, when I hear a couple taps on the window beside me. Much more to my embarrassment, behind the glass was a man with curly blond hair standing there, and I roll down my window.
“Got some car troubles?” he asks.
“Uh… yeah.” trying to play it cool. “My car won’t start.”
“Maybe because you left your headlights on.” he mentions as he points down to the dial for the headlights.
I scoff, as I realized my mistake.
“Well… I could give you a jump if you like. I'm parked right behind you."
“That definitely would be great."
"Okay, I just bring my truck around to the stall right in front of you here." he put in before turning away to get his truck.
It wasn’t more than ten minutes before I was able to start up the car again and he was back at my window.
“Thank-you.” flashing him a smile.
“You’re welcome, …” reciprocating back to me a smile, and pausing, waiting for me to give him my name.
“You’re welcome, Julia. I'm Patrick, by the way.”
“Thank you, Patrick.”
As he began to make his way back to his truck, he spun back around, running back to my window.
“Hey… would you like to catch a movie with me sometime? Maybe this weekend?” he asked.
“Awesome. Can I have your number?”
“Yeah.” I reach over to the glove box for a pen and he already had his hand out for me to write down my number.
“I’ll call you later.”
“Sounds good.” I reply, as he again he makes his way back to his truck.
He drives off, and I sit there for another moment thinking… how did I ever get this lucky?