The Waiting is the Hardest Part

Last Friday I finally got someone in the banking world to take up my cause. I really wish I’d got her name, because she was the kind of get-it-done person you want when you are hungry and all your money is tantalizingly beyond your reach. Hours later the call came from Visa: your replacement card is on the way!


She told me it would be delivered the next business day, Monday. I woke up this morning with the sun on my face (solved with a pillow), but then Real Life started to weasel into my thoughts and suddenly I sat up with a jerk and lunged for the computer. What day is it?

The answer: Monday (rhymes with today). I’m getting an express delivery today. I don’t know when.

I live in what is called around here a ‘villa’. It’s a big house built to have a family on each floor. My place is an afterthought; at some point someone realized that the attic was just a lost opportunity for rent. It takes me three keys to get in: There’s the iron gate by the street, then there’s the door to the building, then there’s my own door at the top of the steps. The catch is that someone on the street has no way to signal me to come down. As I type this, the delivery guy could be down there cursing my name.

So I sit now, windows cracked open despite the chill rain outside, waiting to hear the UPS guy. I am hopeful — when I talked to the final Visa operator I mentioned that the driver should have my phone number. “It will be in the information,” she said, “But we can’t guarantee that the driver will have a telephone.” That was the first funny thing that came out of this whole trauma. A czech without a phone. Ho!

But now I sit, my apartment getting colder (a little complicated – my only windows with ears to the street are in the bathroom, where my heater also lives. The heater pump is failing, and makes a racket. If I have the bathroom door open to hear sounds from the street, I can’t have the heater hammering away.)

So now, I wait. And hope. If the weather was nice I’d just take a book and a chair down to the front lawn. Alas, the weather is not nice. So I’m up here, afraid to do anything that makes the slightest sound lest I miss the critical delivery. Today promises to be big fun.

3 thoughts on “The Waiting is the Hardest Part

  1. Closure, man: I need closure. And I don’t mean the window.

    Even if the delivery turned out to be entirely mundane, I look forward to your “and to think that I saw it on Mulberry Street” treatment. An author’s job, after all, is to make the ordinary extraordinary.

  2. Sorry to keep you hanging. The delivery worked out fine – the driver rang my phone and hung up before I could answer – the universal way to say “I am here” without having to pay anything.

    The card looks like something a high-schooler would come up with as a fake.

    Alas, I still can’t use it as an ATM card, so my time here will be all about cash advances. *sigh*

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