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Carol Perkins: Car mix-up in BG reminds pals of infamous Edmonton caper

After dinner at Cheddar's Judy Wallace & Carol were separated until a frantic search found the passenger waiting in another car. On the road, both remembered the time Judy's father's gold Chevelle vanished from the front of Metcalfe Drugs, in broad daylight. . . and how that blooper has been a decades-old source of amusement.
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Next earlier column: Carol Perkins: Ideas on being safe in church services

By Carol Perkins

Once a week, Judy (Irvin) and I go somewhere. We don't care where we go, we just "go." Last week, we had lunch at Cheddar's in Bowling Green. After we had eaten, I walked ahead of her to warm up the car, and once I had the engine running and the heat on full blast, I realized Judy was nowhere around. I stood on the running board of my SUV and surveyed the parking lot. No Judy. I'm thinking, "She was just behind me two seconds ago so where could she be?" Kidnapped? Fainted?

"Judy," I said in a low tone rather than shouting across the parking lot. No response. Then I noticed to my right a very similar SUV with both the front and the back doors open. This time I yelled, "JUDY!" This time she stuck her head out from behind a stranger's SUV, threw me a look of panic, and said, "I'm in the wrong car!"

She quickly gathered her to-go box from the back seat and her purse from the front of the strange vehicle before anyone saw her. "That's a good reason people should lock their cars!" she said. We laughed uncontrollably for the next few miles.

When the owner of that vehicle left the restaurant after us and sat in his Explorer, I imagined what he would say, when a whiff of baked salmon (Judy's dish), passed under his nose. "Do you smell fish?" he might say to his friend. "Yeah, did you eat fish?" "No, I didn't eat fish. Wonder where that smell is coming from?" For the rest of the afternoon, I visualized this guy (or lady) trying to determine the source of this less than pleasing aroma.

This incident reminded both of us of when Judy's dad, Gilbert Wallace, went to pick up her mother, Ruby, at Metcalfe Drugs where she worked. When he and Ruby left the drugstore, his car was gone. Vanished. However, a car very much like his was parked next to where his had been. They opened that car, which had bucket seats and his didn't, and finally figured out what had happened.

A customer at the drugstore had left as soon as he arrived, passing each other and speaking as he went in and she came out. Because his car looked almost like her car and the keys were in it, she thought it was hers and drove off. When Gilbert and Ruby arrived at her home to make the swap, she was so embarrassed mainly because she hadn't realized she wasn't in her car until they told her. For years, they had a running joke about not knowing your own car even after you drove it!

Bloopers are fun to share because they keep us from feeling stupid when they happen to us. I've done my share of exposing my own over the years...and Guy might declare that I have done a good job of exposing his, too.

This story was posted on 2017-11-21 10:58:16
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