Thursday, March 28, 2013

Dude, Where's My Car?

When we had our fun, family outing in Lusaka before flying out, we decided to rent a car from some missionaries so we wouldn't have to deal with a taxi. The night before our big day, Tom and I picked up the car and then drove to a grocery store for a few items. We were only in the store for a few minutes, but when we came out we realized we had no idea which car was ours.

We had rented a Toyota Corolla which is the most popular car in Lusaka since it can be gotten quite cheaply from Japan and is frequently used for taxis.

To further add to our difficulty in locating the car, it was a gray color--probably one of the most popular color choices as well. 

We were well and truly stuck. Since we'd just picked up the car we hadn't put any items in it yet--no sweaters thrown in the back seat, or identifying pieces of trash. We did know which row we'd parked in, which was a relief--but we walked up and down it before deciding to try the key on the most promising looking gray Toyota Corolla. Thankfully it was the right one!


The next day we parked in the very small parking area of the lodge, next to a blue car, and headed inside for our day's activities. After our game drive Tom and Troy took off to see what else could be done. Because: Family. Fun. Day!

I sat down, with Jasmine, in one of the sitting rooms to take care of checking in online for our flight the next day. When we'd done that we started looking for Troy and Tom. I glanced down into the parking lot and saw the door to our car (or what I thought was our car) standing open. I thought perhaps Tom had decided to rest (though it seemed odd) and so Jasmine and I went down there. We couldn't see anyone though as we neared the car, so we made the appropriate scary movie sounds, and approached with caution.

The car was empty. It was weird. Why was the door open? We still weren't 100% it was our car, but it had the newspaper in it that Tom had bought on the way in that morning.

Not sure what to think I simply popped the trunk--stowed my laptop case in there--and locked everything up. Only after slamming the door shut did I worry a bit that perhaps Tom didn't have the key and that I'd just locked us all out of the car.

When we eventually met up with Tom and Troy, Tom was horrified that the door had been open. He insisted he had shut and locked all the doors. Now I began to truly worry. What if I'd just stuck my computer into someone else's car? 

We sent Jasmine down to unlock the car and check on our things. She reported back that the car wasn't there anymore because there was no car with a newspaper in it, and the only gray car had an unlocked front door (remember I had locked all the doors).

I. Freaked!

Hurrying just as quickly as I could, I rushed to the parking lot. There was our car. Still sitting there next to the blue car. With a newspaper which had fallen to the floor. And, yes, an unlocked front door (I guess I didn't lock it properly). 


Thankfully, all our things were still safe in the trunk. 

Next time I rent a car, I'm memorizing the license plate--or taking a picture of it.

Yesterday I said this was Dude Where's My Car--edition two. I thought I'd already titled a blog post with this name--turns out I'd simply named a bug that

Exactly Two Years Ago: Nathan's Story
Exactly Three Years Ago: Sunday's in My City--London!


  1. JoAnne LeppoMarch 28, 2013

    Take a picture.... works best. When I leave my car at the airport, I always take a picture with my phone of the car next to the identifying post. and then I take a picture of the elevator next to the car.... It's so freak-out time when you can't find your car ....and such a time waster!!! So glad you didn't put your computer into someone else's car. Whew, now that would be a nightmare!

  2. Debra HawkinsMarch 28, 2013

    How freaky! I have started taking pictures of the places I park in parking garages and such. I never seem to remember where I parked even after I swear I will.

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  6. hahaha! What a couple of events! So glad it all worked out, but taking a picture next time sounds good.


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