Tuesday, July 24, 2012

I'm Always Prepared Unless I'm Not

Yesterday I got back to Indianapolis from the SKUSA SummerNats in Utah.It was a smooth flight and I boarded the shuttle, yes, the shuttle I mentioned last week (thankfully there were no more "ahem" moments.)and as it took off to the lot I had a sinking feeling... I had no idea where I parked!

Normally I am the most prepared person you will meet and I am very precise on knowing where I am, where I parked, and well, most anything. However, when I parked on Thursday the sun was just coming up and I wasn't quite awake. Now, as I was in the shuttle going back to my car, it was pitch black night.

What happened? Did I purposely set this situation up? Nope. I was so focused on the race at hand last week that I had no concept whatsoever that I would be returning. It wasn't that I forgot where I parked as to do that I would have had to known at some point in time. It was actually I never made note of where I parked.

I got off on a random stop and stood in the massive lot with a sense of being in the middle of a desert trying to find a penny that had been dropped. I kept trying to think back to Thursday and the day I got there but the only thing I could remember was the "ahem" story and writing my blog at gate A6. The car ride to the airport was lost and was like it never happened.

What to do? I walked up one aisle, then the next, and then it struck me; I was going to use my panic button on my remote car locker as I was in a state of panic because I knew I would be there until the sun came up.

I walked several paces and hit the button and nothing. Did it again and nothing. 10 minutes later and still nothing. By this point in time I was frustrated, sweaty, and running out of steam. It was way too hot to be lost in the airport parking lot but the state of being lost continued. 20 minutes and nothing and then finally, going on half an hour, I hit the button once more and an alarm went off. Finally! I had found my car.

This story fits perfectly in my ongoing series of how Asperger's can have an effect on everyday life. Normally I am fully prepared and know exactly where I am going; however, if I am focused on getting somewhere as I was last week with getting to the airport to get to the race I may lose track of what I am doing in the middle. I will say this though, this is the last time this is going to happen because next time I am going to send a text to myself with the section I'm in because I am not going to wander the parking lot like I did ever again!


  1. Oooohhh, I know that feeling... We had that at the Efteling. (my favorite amusement park. It's in the Netherlands. I'm actually planning on taking you there if you want to and if you manage to come here)

    We had a very slow morning, but then had a lot of fun at the park. When we returned to the parking lot, we all looked at each other and realised we forgot to check where we parked our car. We searched for an hour!
    We had the same response as you did: "Never again!" Now we try to make it a habit to take a picture of the number/letter of the parking space when we go to the Efteling. Usually we easily remember where the car is, but we won't take chances anymore at a big parking lot.

  2. I remember I used to never keep track of where the car was parked because someone always did it for me. Parents, friends, boyfriends. It's only been because of a few helpful beaus in my adult life that would actually conscientiously teach me to note where the car was parked that I remembered to make this a habit when I was eventually on my own. It did not come naturally. My mind was always elsewhere.

    I'm now teaching my young Apserger's boy to take note of where we park the car, not just for himself but so he can help me figure out where we park as I get older and will surely become distracted, again. :)