- A black pillar with a silver-painted top, or
- An entirely red pillar.
This is how I managed to do the unthinkable and park next to a fire hydrant Saturday evening.
I was heading down the street of the mighty Ratatosk and Amy for a night of pizza, boardgaming, and whimsy. The street was fairly full, the hazy morning having given way to a decent afternoon that probably helped fill several of the neighborhood backyards with barbecues and beer fests. When I noticed a spot just outside my destination, I pulled in eagerly and headed on up to the apartment.
What I did not notice was the dinky-ass yellow fireplug next to my car, which explained why this spot was mysteriously available.
Hours later, after a ton of fun getting to know Warrior Knights, I exited into the humid summer morning (it was pretty damn late by then!), only to spot a familiar oblong shape on the windshield of my car.
I pulled the ticket off and scrutinized it, wondering if I had violated the time limit for street parking. Instead, it indicated that I had parked within 10 feet of a hydrant. To which I replied, out loud, "What hydrant?!" I walked around the car only to see this stunted iron pipe, painted yellow, of all colors, hiding behind my vehicle.
I felt so stupid. Thankfully, there had been no need to access the hydrant in my time there. Still, I think the fine folks at the fire department or DPW of the offended town might do its visitors a favor and render their hydrants in the same traditional color scheme as the rest of the country. If I didn't see it in broad daylight, how the hell are the firefighters supposed to locate it in a rush of stress?