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Eggs are OK, but not two dozen. And not on our car. And not in 90-plus degree heat.Yep, the neighborhood got hit, and houses on corners are primo because of all the multiple escape routes. Guess who lives on a corner.

So instead of watching college football, Thomas and I hopped into our 1999 silver Buick Century and drove to the self-service car wash. Even with the duct tape on the side mirrors (yes, both), a driver’s side window that doesn’t roll down, a broken heater and a/c fan and missing cupholders, the car still drives like a cushy couch on wheels.

With the added yellow egg decor on the exterior, we couldn’t be classier.

Thomas drove the side streets to the car wash, and I saw one of my favorite things in someone’s front yard ... an open house sign.

I looked at Thomas.

“No,” he said.


“We have egg on our car.”

“So?” I asked.

“They won’t take us seriously.”

“Dude, hardly anyone that goes through an open house is considering buying. Most are looking for new decorating ideas.”

“You mean being nosy.”

“Whatever,” I said. “You know I deserve this. Two dozen eggs, Thomas, two dozen. Besides, it’s a really old house. I loooovvvve really old houses.”

“Fine, but we’re in and out.”

“You’re the best,” I kissed him, adding a little extra sweaty love from above my top lip.

The house was awesome! And, Jill, the real estate agent, was awesomer. She showed us all the amenities, rooms, backyard, and then talked up the schools and neighborhood.

Thomas asked if the cat, George, was for sale. He’s so cute. Thomas, not George. George was a train wreck. His tail was bent at a weird angle and half his body was missing hair.

When George escorted us around the upstairs, I saw IT ... the hip-height door in the hallway between the bedrooms. I knew exactly what it was. It was a childhood dream come true is what it was.

I casually set my sunglasses on the dresser in the master bedroom and followed Thomas and Jill downstairs.

“Thank you for the tour and information,” Thomas said, shaking Jill’s hand.

“You’re welcome. If you have any questions, here’s my card.”

“Oh, no,” I said. “I think I forgot my sunglasses upstairs. I’ll be right back.” I figured I had about five minutes before Thomas got fed up and came looking for me, which was plenty of time.

Because I just wanted to see if I’d fit.


It wasn’t my usual hot flash that was making me sweaty, it was excitement. I’ve fantasized about this moment for over 40 years.

Luckily, the chute was over child-bearing hip width, and with some creative maneuvering, I found myself with my body inside and my forearms supporting me on the lip of the door. I wouldn’t say it was comfortable, but I didn’t need it to be, because mission accomplished. I was inside a laundry chute.

Since I’m an adult, and make better choices now, I knew letting go wasn’t a great idea. A second floor to basement drop was a long way. I mean, my body could take it, but not gracefully.

And then George.

“Whatcha doin’?” George meowed.

“Go away.”

“But I wanna see.”“No, this might kill you. You’re a cat and I don’t know how many lives you have left. I mean, really, look at your body. I’d feel guilty if this was your last one. Please don’t be curious.”

“But it’s in my nature,” and George jumped.

And I waved my arms and somehow managed to not only slip a body length into the chute, but not hit my chin or scream in the process. I was holding on with my weak fingers, my back arched pushing my butt to the back wall and my upper torso and shoulders to the front one.

And George was balancing on the lip of the door looking down at me and yawning.

Then I waited. I knew I could count on Thomas. I’d have appreciated it if he had got fed up with me sooner.

“Hi,” he said, petting George.

“Hi,” George and I said.

“What a surprise to find you in another chute.”

“Very funny. Just pull me out before Jill sees me.”

“Krista, more people than Jill are going to see you.”

“You’re calling them, aren’t you?”

“Yep,” he laughed.

Five minutes later, I heard sirens. Jill had phoned the owners, and Thomas was still laughing.

“Are you doing OK?” he asked.

“Livin’ the dream,” I said. “Actually, I am living my dream. I’ve wanted to be inside a laundry chute for almost my whole life.”

“You have bizarre dreams.”

“True,” I agreed. “And I never thought I’d say this, but I’m glad my butt sticks out and I have no chest.”

Let’s just say it took a winch, A WINCH, to get me out of the chute.

Thomas doesn’t take me to open houses anymore.

Krista Vance is a former Champaign resident. While she now calls northern Colorado home, she spent five wonderful years in Champaign and misses great friends, corn and big-sky sunsets.