Does anyone else ever get that thing where you go somewhere in your car (the local mall, say) and when you come back a couple of hours later, it’s SO COLD both of the locks on your car doors have frozen solid? So solid that you can’t even get your key into either one of them, never mind prise the door open with your fingernails, like you did last time?
So you drop your bags, containing the shiny new bikini you just bought (because you are stupid, and therefore exactly the kind of person who goes out and buys BIKINIS in February. When it is snowing) on the frozen ground, and then you drop YOURSELF onto the frozen ground too, onto your knees, in fact, and you pray to the God of Cars. “Please GOC,” you say, “Let the doors be opened, because this car park is dark and cold and I’m all alone in it, except for the crazy old man who will surely turn up any second now to torment, and possibly kill me. Also, this new bikini won’t be much use in the snow.” Maybe you even say a few “Open Sesames” at this point, who knows.
But it doesn’t work. The doors remain resolutely frozen, and no matter how hard you pull and yell and try to force the key into them, they will not budge. But wait! Wait! There is a can of de-icer in the car boot! If only the lock on the boot will open for you! Oh, sweet, merciful Jesus, it WILL! And there is your de-icer! Hallelujah, you are SAVED!
So you skip like a lamb (albeit a clumsy lamb. That is wearing high heeled boots on an icy day.) back to the driver’s side door and you spray your de-icer like there is no tomorrow. You spray, and you spray, and then you spray a little more. And it does not work. The door is still frozen solid, so you mosey on round to the passenger door to try your luck there, casting furtive glances over your shoulder as you go, fully expecting to see a stooped and sinister shape shuffle into view in the deserted car park (did I mention that the car park is also pitch dark? And that soft flakes of snow have started to fall?) and start making its way towards you. “Ya’ll need some help there?” the stooped figure will ask (because in your foolish head, you are now apparently living in Hicksville, USA, as well as being stranded in a frozen car park in the dark), before bludgeoning you to death with the crowbar he was hiding up the back of his filthy trench coat the whole time. When your body is finally found, it will still be clutching the carrier bag containing the new bikini. It is a mystery that will puzzle your friends and family for months, until they finally remember that you always were a bit wrong in the head anyway.
You spray your de-icer on the passenger side door, to the point where you actually start to get high from the fumes. But the door does not open. So you shuffle back round to the driver’s side, and you rinse and you repeat. And then you do it again. And maybe once more for luck.
Finally, success! The passenger side door succumbs to your mighty efforts, so you throw your bags into the car, and you climb in, snagging your thigh really painfully on the handbrake as you do so, and making a mental note NOT to buy a coupe next time. Then you realise that, why, the snow that has fallen has formed a solid crust on all your windows, so you must get right back out again to scrape them!
First, you try opening the driver’s door from the inside, using the very scientific method of throwing your body against it like a lunatic in a padded cell. Needless to say, this makes absolutely NO DIFFERENCE to the door whatsoever, so you’re forced to once again climb across the central console, this time snagging your OTHER thigh really painfully on the handbrake. You spend a few unhappy minutes scraping down the car, and getting your coat soaked in the process, before repeating the whole process once again, with the passenger door and the handbrake. GOD.
Now, I know what you’re thinking: you’re thinking that after all of that, what would’ve been really funny would be if the car decided to pull its “stalling at low speeds” trick again on the way home. I thought so too. In fact, I thought of little else all the way home, but actually, after my ill-fated trip to the gym last week the car was sent to the naughty step, and has never done that again. In fact, if you asked it, I bet it would say it has NEVER done that, no siree!
I had to climb out of the passenger door when I got home, though. At least I will have matching bruises on both thighs. And hey, it is a really cute bikini!