Anyway, we were going to have breakfast but now she's hacking at the icemaker. I turn on the water to wash my hands, and only a thin trickle comes out. "Is there a reason we don't have any water?" I ask, because maybe she already knows about it. "I DON'T KNOW, ONE PROBLEM AT A TIME!" Okay! "Maybe they're working on the street," she adds (hack hack, stab hack). But when they work on the street, usually you just get a dry sputter. Not a steady trickle. "I just did a load of clothes, so we have water," she says (stab stab stabstabstab). Let the record show that at this point I knew something was up, but kind of didn't want to press the issue.
We're going to have cereal. We need more milk. I go downstairs to the other fridge--does anyone else do this? Whenever we've had to get a new fridge--like, twice in the history of life--we'll put the old one downstairs and the new one upstairs, and the one downstairs is for frozen food and soda. And holiday leftovers, but you get my point. So I'm downstairs in the basement/rec room/refrigerated section getting the new jug of milk and I hear this sound. Now, from the rec room, you can usually hear running water--someone's taking a shower, someone's watering the plants, someone's running the dishwasher. Except that I know that no one's outside, no one's in the shower, and the dishwasher was finished. And the sound seems to be coming not from overhead, but... garagewards.
So I open the door that leads to the garage. You know how Geena Davis opens that door in Beetlejuice and suddenly it's all Dune in there? Substitute "Niagara Falls" and you've got it. Water is pouring out of ceiling, a cascade about three feet wide, onto my mother's car and seeping out under the garage door. You know, the lifty-lifty door. Except there's a lot of water and a very small gap, so it's mostly forming a lagoon at the far end of the room.
I shut the door.
I'm telling you, I stood there for a moment and thought, I am not going to tell her about this. She'd find out eventually, wouldn't she? I wouldn't have to be the one to break the news, right? She'd have to drive somewhere eventually, right? She'd see it then! Or! Or! Even before then! She might look out the kitchen window and see a small ford in the driveway and realize that something's up! Right?
The sad thing is, I end up telling her, and not because common sense prevails. You know, the idea that eventually the reservoir is going to call up and go, "Ma'am, for the love of God, check your basement, because we're running out." The idea that time is of the essence and water doesn't grow on trees, or... some metaphor that actually makes sense, or... look, I'm still a little bit in shock, okay? No, I tell her because I realize I'm a good liar, but I'm not that good.
"Well, I've fixed the icemaker," she says. She's dumping ice back into it out of a big green bowl. There's melted ice everywhere and the dumping is very crashy-noisy. "So, uh, there's alotofwaterinthebasement," I blurt out. "WHAT?" "In the--" "WHERE?" "You're not gonna miss it." Off she goes.
So I sit down and eat my cereal. I hear the garage doors lift (Rrrrrrr), and you will forgive me for imagining a tidal SPLOOOOOOSH right after it. They--my stepfather turned right back around from work and came home--are still down there. More news as it happens, I guess.