About ten years ago, I married Jeremy (yes, it's really been that long...I'm getting old. Hush).
When that happened, we began "the merge."
We merged bills, bank accounts, car payments - and of course, cell phone plans.
I hopped on his AT&T mobile account and got a new number.
About a month after I obtained my my new cell phone number, I started getting calls from Annie.
I always missed the calls - they would happen during school or when I was asleep- but Annie always left a voicemail.
"Eudene?! Eudene?! This is Annie. You gonna pick me up to take be to the beauty salon?"
"Eudene! Eudene! Call me back - I gotta tell you what Sally did at church!"
"Eudene - I keep calling you! Why aren't you callin' me back?"
"Eudene - I know it's too late for us chickens - but I just had to tell you about what happened this week...."
Annie was amusing for a while, but one day I felt bad for the poor lady because she could never reach her friend. I finally picked up the phone one day.
"Hello, ma'am - which number are you trying to reach?"
"Oh, Eudene! Eudene, is that you?"
"No ma'am --- this isn't Eudene. Which number are you trying to reach?"
Annie rattled off my number - just with a different area code.
After Annie figured out that she was dialing the wrong area code, she only called me by accident every now and then. Eventually, the calls for Eudene stopped.
Then, a few weeks ago, I started receiving calls from Rick Hendricks Chevrolet.
I found it odd, but I figured the Cheverolet place just dialed a wrong number and would correct their mistake.
The calls just kept on a-comin'. Did I like my Malibu? Was I pleased with my purchase? Would I like to take a survey? Could I please pick up the phone the next time the survey company called? Customer service mattered - was I pleased? Knowing this information was apparently of dire importance.
Finally, one of the voicemails left a telling, sobering truth:
"Yes, this call is for Eudene [last name deleted to protect the innocent]! Miss Eudene, we were just calling to see how you are enjoying your brand new Chevy Malibu! Please let us know how things are going in your new car!"
Eudene done bought a Malibu.
So, for the past week, I've received endless calls and voicemails about a Chevy Malibu that doesn't belong to me. They've been difficult to intercept since I've been at school, so a couple of days ago I lunged for the hands of destiny and grabbed them violently. It was time to do what every red-blooded American girl would do in such a situation.
"Rick Hendricks Chevrolet!"
"Yes, this is Dana Farr. Did you recently sell a brand new Chevy Malibu to a lady named Eudene?"
"Her name is Eudene [last name deleted to protect the innocent]. She gave you my number instead of her number. She gave you the wrong area code. I've been getting her calls for years."
"Oh, wow. Really? What's your number?"
I told the nice receptionist.
"Oh, my goodness. Yes, I have two area codes down for this number. Would you like me to change this to 706? I am so sorry about that!"
For some reason, at that moment, I drove past a little old lady in a Malibu. I pictured Eudene, in all of her Chevrolet-embossed glory, grey hair flappin' in the wind, and laughing hysterically about this little hiccup.
I bet she can't wait to tell Annie about her new Malibu.
In the meantime, let's hope Eudene doesn't start applying for jobs at Waffle House.