ZIPPY TRIP TO THE ZONE

In 1965, I was first married. We lived in an apartment in one of two identical brick buildings. Our flat was 2 Q at the far end of the hall. A corner apartment, nice because we had better than average light.

I didn’t drive yet, but it wasn’t a problem. There was a bus stop right in front of our building and the university was just a 5-minute walk. When I wanted to go into town, I just hopped a bus. No parking problems, either.

One sunny day, I felt like going shopping. I did. Had lunch, bought a few things. Having taken the bus home, I took the elevator to the second floor, balancing my packages. I walked silently down the long carpeted hallway to apartment 2Q.

I tried to put my key in the lock, and it didn’t fit. Odd. Hmm. A nameplate was firmly attached to the middle of the door.

2 Q

KINCAID

My name was not Kincaid. I didn’t even know anyone named Kincaid. It was Apartment 2 Q. But not my place. Or maybe it was, but what was with the nameplate? Hmm.

Feeling increasingly dazed, I made a quick u-turn and walked back to the elevator. I pressed the button and rode back down to the lobby. I stood there for a few minutes, breathing. Then got back into the elevator back to the second floor. Should I have taken the stairs?

 

75-BricksBoston

Ding! I arrived. Clutching my packages against my chest, I — slower than before — walked down the hall. The pattern in the paint on the wall paint seemed cleaner and brighter. I was feeling a bit light-headed when I got to the end where that pesky nameplate still read “Kincaid.”

There was no question in my mind what had happened. I’d expected it all along.

I had slipped through an invisible wormhole. I was now in a parallel universe, another dimension. Everything was identical in this dimension to the world I knew except that in this place — I didn’t exist. Where I had been, someone named Kincaid was living. Maybe Kincaid was my husband. Perhaps I did exist and Jeffrey had gone missing.

I stood there. Breathing. Staring at the nameplate. Pacing a little down the hall and coming back.  Until finally, I looked out the window. And realized I was in the wrong building.

I’d made a simple mistake and gone into the wrong building.

I have forever since harbored a sense of disappointment. However weird, I wanted the magic to be real. I wanted an adventure in The Twilight Zone.


WHOA, DAILY PROMPT – This is at least the third time this prompt has appeared in one form or another. Maybe more. So if this sounds familiar, it’s because this is the third version of this story I’ve published. Because there are only so many ways to answer the same question.



Categories: Anecdote, Humor, Sci Fi - Fantasy - Time Travel

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

24 replies

  1. LOL! I’ve done both (apartment and car), unfortunately! At least you didn’t knock on the offending door and scream at the residents! I was so frustrated that day–they ended up being my best friends for 5 years, too!

    Like

  2. I’ve done that with a hotel room. I put my key card into the card reader and it wouldn’t work. I tried it several times, thinking, “What the heck is going on??!!” Then I looked up at the number plate on the door and realized: oh, this isn’t MY room. I was two doors up from the room I was using. Whoops.

    Like

  3. Front street. 599 Front Street. The other building was 621 Front Street. You’ve got to be the ONLY other living soul who remembers that apartment! Hofstra bought the buildings. It’s now married graduate housing.

    Like

  4. I drove a red Ford Focus for several years as did (it seems) most people in the world. More than once I tried to get into someone else’ car and, I guess, others tried to get into mine.

    Like

    • In Israel, everyone drove compact white cars. You had to put a flag on your car to make it visible from the others. They ALL looked the same. White was the only color that didn’t bleach in the hot sun. I can’t remember all the times we mistook someone else’s car for ours.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I remember those two identical buildings from the first time I visited you and Jeffery there after you were married. Front St…, Or Fulton..?

    Like

    • Front street. 599 Front Street. The other building was 621 Front Street. You’ve got to be the ONLY other living soul who remembers that apartment! Hofstra bought the buildings. It’s now married graduate housing.

      Like

      • I now fully understand the “short term”, “long term” memory thing. Stuff like that I remember.., what I was going to do next lasts only for a matter of seconds.., it’s a small window at best.

        Like

  6. I thought things like that only happened to golden oldies. I once tried a full five minutes to open our car door and then realised it was the neighbour’s car, We both had a brown Simca Horizon, the same model and they were both parked in the same row opposite our appartment block. How embarrassing.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. It would have been a real adventure to be in that zone!
    Leslie

    Like

  8. What a great story, very enjoyable read. I tried to open MY car a few times, just to find out it wasn’t my car…way back then when we had real keys and not the automatic car opener.

    Like

    • Well, yes, real keys. We still have real keys. We are very retro, I fear. The snow stopped and the dripping has recommenced. We cancelled our little vacation to Cooperstown. The weather in upper New York State is even colder and nastier than here. It’s going to take longer than two weeks to improve enough to make the trip worthwhile. Bummer.

      Liked by 1 person

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