A Single Parent Morning

Do you see a battery here?
It was one of those days that being a single parent hurts.
It was 7:20: Stephanie had an exam at 8.  I was about to take Michelle to school.  The older headed out the door in a rush to meet a friend for some final cramming.
7:21 AM:  “Dad, my car won’t start!  HELP!”
Indeed, we had a dead battery.  I was buttoning my white, starched, dress shirt but my flannels and bedroom shoes were still on my bottom half.  I grabbed my keys knowing I’d be late to work.
7:22 AM:  I texted my co-worker informing her of my likely tardiness.
7:25.15 AM:  The gas is nearly out indicator light came on.
7:25.30.16 AM:  I cursed.
7:36 AM:  Stephanie jumped out of the car rushing to her exam.
Me:  “Can you find a ride home from school?”
Her:  “Probably.”
Me:  “If so, pick your sister up at 3:15, assuming I get the car started.  If not, hang tight.  I’ll pick you up at some point before bedtime!”
7:40 AM:  Me:  “Michelle.  Someone will pick you up after school today.  Keep your phone on.  If Stephanie or I can’t get there by 3:30, go to Panera.”
Michelle:  “I don’t have any money.”
Me:  “Neither do I – check the ashtray.”
Michelle:  “There’s only $1.63.”
Me:  “Give them our home phone number, I think we have enough Panera points for a free pastry.  Drink water if you can’t find another quarter.  I think  drink is like $2.”
Michelle:  “What can you get as a free pastry?”
Me:  “I think anything in the glass case.  Pick the most expensive thing.”
Michelle:  “What if I don’t like it?”
Me:  “Get it anyway.  We want to maximize our purchasing power.”
7:56 AM:  Dropped Michelle at school.
7:59 AM:  Arrived at the gas station.
8:01 AM:  Man in a pickup truck eyeballed my choice of clothing.
Get at me dude!
8:30 AM:  I open

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