A few weeks ago, I watched our neighbors’ place while they were out of town for the week. They have a cute little cat, whom I was in charge of feeding twice a day. Not really that difficult since I have a fur farm of my own, so when they returned they were happy that everything was pretty much how they left it…..with one exception. Stephen sent me a note on Facebook thanking me for my petsitting services, then asked, “By the way, have you seen our patio umbrella?”
I had not, but we had had a bad storm a few nights earlier (due to Tropical Storm Douche Canoe) and the wind was really nasty. Certain that the umbrella had been whisked away in the storm, we were both equally concerned whether or not it had impaled anyone. Since there were no reports on the news of anyone being stabbed in the chest by a random flying umbrella, we sent a note of thanks to the Universe.
Fast forward a few weeks later, while I am working Thursday morning, and another nasty storm dumped 3-inches of water on the city in a matter of 30 minutes. I looked out my office window to watch the rain when low and behold I see an umbrella on the roof of the building next door. Sure as shit, it’s our neighbors’, so I sent him a note on Facebook to say I had found it! Sadly, there is an 8-foot wall between our roof and the one next-door that must be skillfully scaled if we are to recover the umbrella. None of us think it’s worth that, so I guess it will just rot until the AC guys have to get up on the roof to inspect the units for the building next door – at which time I will sweetly ask them to hoist the umbrella up over the wall.
In the meantime, I was on the phone today with Malia about other business – like my trip to the Mile High this week – and we had to plot and scheme for when we will be able to get oysters and drink martinis during my visit. I had just come down from upstairs where I had watered the plants (for the second time today) because it is so f**king HOT that the leaves will probably catch fire. Since the sun was beating down at 110-degrees and still going upwards, I also set up our patio umbrella.
Malia and I were in the middle of coordinating our schedules when I heard a loud “thump” from upstairs. Figuring that umbrella had tipped over on its side, I went upstairs to see if it had killed any plants on its way. When I looked out, I didn’t see any umbrella, though….sooooo, I told Malia, “hey, I’m gonna have to call you back, I don’t know where my umbrella is, I think it blew off the patio.” Our patio happens to be on the forth floor of an old dry goods building which was converted to lofts several years ago.
Immediately, I looked on the roof next door, but there was still only our neighbors’ umbrella over there. Then, I looked over to our neighbors’ patio – no umbrella. Reluctantly, I looked to the street below, fearing that I would see some poor homeless dude with an umbrella sticking out of his chest…..nothing. So I say, “GAWD Damn IT! Mary Poppins stole our umbrella!……..That BITCH!”
I put on my flip-flops and rode the elevator down to hell and back outside in the blazing sun to scope out the carnage that I may have inadvertently caused….but nothing. I should know better because it is, after all, Sunday….in Jacksonville….and there ain’t nobody downtown on Sundays in Jacksonville….except the bums and I had already concluded they were safe from umbrellas, and not impaled, in the park across the street.
Then, I rounded the corner to the other side of the building, when I stopped short and started laughing my ass off. Of course, I had to run back inside the building to get my camera for this shit. Came back down and the umbrella was still there, so I took a pic and sent Malia a text, “Found It!”