Staying Focused *** this is a good one, promise ***
I have a new car.
It's a 2013 Ford Focus Titanium. It has all sorts of fancy bells and whistles; the car can actually parallel park itself. (yes, it really works, and it's amazing.) It also has a bunch of other features that I'm just starting to learn about, and they're getting me in trouble.
I did a run in Griffith Park after work. Did the 3-mile loop around the golf course then got back to my car parked at the zoo. The car doesn't use an ignition key; instead, you have to have a special wireless key fob with you and you step on the brake while pressing the Start button. I was very sweaty and didn't want to climb into the car to start it up to get the A/C going. Fortunately, there was another option- you can start the car using a remote button on the key fob. So I did that instead. I was standing with the driver's door open and dumped my phone and the key fob on the driver's seat. I had a clean shirt, a towel, and some water in the footwell on the passenger side, so I walked to the other side of the car, instinctively closing the driver door.
As it turns out, when you remote-start the car, the car goes into a "security" mode and all the doors lock automatically. I was locked out of my car, with the engine running, staring at the keys and my phone on the front seat. Alone, in an empty parking lot at the zoo.
I spent about 5 seconds trying to shimmy a window open but I knew that wouldn't work. And I wasn't about to smash a window on my new car. I had no phone to call anyone, and even if I flagged someone down and asked to borrow their phone, who memorizes phone numbers anymore? We just speed-dial. I needed another option. I don't live very far from the zoo, so I figured I already did some running, might as well add a little distance.
It's very easy for me to get home from the zoo by car - it's only 1.5 miles by freeway. But if you take the side streets, you have to cross two freeways and the L.A. River and it's a convoluted maze that's probably 4 or 5 miles. Well I wasn't about to run another 5 miles, so I just took the freeway. Now then, loyal readers may recall that I accidentally rode my bike on the freeway a few years ago. I took the same route, only this time it was intentional and on foot. If you don't count the on/off ramps, I was technically only on the 134 for about 1/4 mile so that isn't TOO bad. But it was rather loud and busy in the middle of rush hour. And I was surprised just how DIRTY the road was. There was garbage and car parts everywhere that you don't really notice when you're driving by.
Everyone asks me "weren't you worried a cop would see you?" Well, yes, but I wasn't worried about getting a ticket. I was more concerned about the embarrassment of having to explain how I locked my keys in a running car.
I made it home, used a hidden key to get inside, picked up the spare car key and my bike and rode back to the zoo. This time I stuck to the side streets. When I got back to the car, the engine was stopped. At first I was worried that I had run out of gas, but I guess the remote start just automatically turns off if you don't do anything after 10 or 20 minutes. I threw my bike in the back and drove home.
I've ridden my bike on the freeway. I've run on the freeway. Somehow, I suspect someday I will swim on the freeway.