I parked my car in the first available space yesterday when I came back from Rockaway. (All last week it was in a lovely spot, observing the Jewish New Year.) For some reason, when I started it up at eight-thirty this morning to go around the block and double-park across the street, all I got was a low rumble and a few clicks. I hadn’t left the lights on … so I don’t know what is wrong or what to do.
For now, I did nothing. It’s not always easy to do nothing, but in this case it was. I could call AAA. I could shanghai a fellow-motorist and involve him with my jumper cables. I could get the portable charger out of the trunk and see if it worked. But if I succeeded in getting the car started, I would have to drive it some distance to recharge it, and all I wanted to do was get out of the way of the street sweeper and then repark.
There is an office of the Department of Sanitation on this block, and the Sanitation police had left a few cars double-parked across from it. The Broom itself was escorted by the Sanitation police. They favor a white Ford Taurus. I got out as the sanitation cop approached, shrugged theatrically, and said, “Dead battery.” The Sanitation guy said, “No problem,” and added “Sorry” as he went past. The Broom swept around me—or tried to. The Sanitation cop had stopped to ticket an untended vehicle parked ahead of me, so the Broom idled in the middle of the street. Everyone idled while the cop issued the ticket. There was no honking.
At 9:15 a woman cop came by on foot patrol. She was beautiful, black, and busty, and walked in the street with her hands in her pockets. At 9:22 a traffic-enforcement car cruised by. At 9:50 a traffic-enforcement van, full of those orange cones, went by. I had been thinking of trying a little experiment, leaving the car after the Broom went by, to see if the cops had become enlightened as to the lack of necessity for people to be sitting in their cars once the street had been swept. Good thing I thought better of it.
On Thursday, I’ll have to do something about my battery.