h1

Adventures in setting up exhibits…

January 17, 2009

Pittsburgh, 2009. Picture it. (If you know where “picture it” comes from, you’re my new hero.)

It’s 9 in the morning. 1 degree is the actual temperature. I (native Texan) am dressed in every single piece of warm clothing I own. I have on three pairs of socks, but only one pair of gloves. I begin to wonder what I’m in store for as I clear the snow off my car. I get in and let it warm up, and then I head to the gas station. I pull up to the ONLY pump on the premises that has no latch to keep the pump pumping without me having to hold it. So I stand there, in the bitter cold, waiting to fill up my SUV from empty.

10 minutes and 10 very frozen fingers later, I am in the car heading to Pittsburgh Filmmakers to meet up with my coworker. We get a quick breakfast to warm ourselves up and fortify ourselves for the work and weather. We head back to the office, load my car with pieces of art, and get directions.

As I’m getting directions (on the slowest computer on EARTH), my coworker tells me that we have one more stop in downtown. 15 minutes later, we head out with directions in hand.

Here we are, driving into downtown Pittsburgh on a Friday morning, and the temperature is barely above zero. We have directions and a vague plan. We stop in front of a gallery and load four pieces of art into my already stuffed car. We take off in the wrong direction for the Pittsburgh Technology Council. We figure out (as we are about to cross a bridge) that we’re heading in the wrong direction and make a u-turn. Finally, we find the street and make the turn.

About 5 minutes and some confused looks later, I accidentally run a red light (I blame it on the bridge) and we wind up at a dead-end street that is very obviously NOT where we are supposed to be. I turn to go around the block, and wind up at the same light I ran as a cop pulls up. I’m trying to determine if this same light is actually green while trying to decide on right or left. After a few fakes in each direction, I turn left and double back. My coworker urges me to turn around so we can try again, but every time I check my mirrors, there are at least 3 or 4 cops in the vicinity.

At this point, I’m convinced that a crazy Texan driver has been called in and all units are on the lookout for me. I’ve turned from a 25 year old film buff into that crazy grandma driver. Or perhaps, someone has seen all the oddly shaped, wrapped packages obscuring my view and called us in as art thieves, leading to not-so-subtle surveillance. Who knows? All of this is happening while we are still in downtown. We finally get turned around, but that was close to where we started. We retrace our steps and realize that the light that I originally ran is the light where I should have turned left. This time, I make the turn.

As we’re on this new street, another cop pulls up alongside me, toying with me, daring me to mess up. Thank goodness I had a navigator or I probably would have had a heart attack! At one point, we pass a right turn (and hey, the directions called for a right turn!) that didn’t have a street sign. I make a (bad) decision to turn right in the off chance this is where we are supposed to be, and we wind up in front of the jail(click on bird’s eye view for the full effect). On a very narrow street. In an SUV.

After a 4396-point turn, I manage to swing the car around and head back out. Wouldn’t you know it, as we get back onto the main street, ANOTHER cop is there ready to pick up where the first left off? We keep driving, and finally wind up in a familiar area. Realization hits us at the same time. We were maybe a mile away from Filmmakers in an area both of us knew. And it only took us about an hour and a half to finally get there!

I park (crookedly) in the handicapped space as people from PTC come out and help us unload. I check my phone and see several missed calls and texts from my boss. Thankfully my coworker reminded me to check, otherwise we would have had to repeat that trip! We unload one of the four extra pieces we picked up downtown, as it is being added to the exhibit. We are happy that the job is done, but the best part is knowing that due to the nature of the business, the exhibit won’t be set up until next week…

We almost always set up early because dear old Murphy usually tries to interfere with the best-laid plans, as this little adventure clearly shows. Oh well though…this misadventure is only an excuse to have an after-work drink and a chance to warm our frozen extremities. All of this is also EXACTLY why we expect to be seeing you at the exhibit (details below) next week!

Advertisements

2 comments

  1. Dang! (Yes, actually, I AM one of her Texas buds) It’d take me awhile to get everything unpuckered, which would be high on my to-do list for fear things would freeze in that puckered condition.


    • Trust me chica, that heater was on full blast, the hottest I could get it for several hours. We were in four-wheel drive the entire time too. I have been called a wuss by the native Pittsburghers because of my aversion to the cold.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: