Friday, August 10, 2012

Good People in the World: The Lost Wallet Saga of 2012

I had a reminder this past weekend that there are good people in the world while I was in Baltimore visiting my sister (she's going through a tough time, and it's right in the midst of moving into a new house, so I went to help out, along with my brother-in-law's parents and brother).

When we went to Mary's work to print my boarding pass, my nephew Eddie had a little urinary incident on the stairs (he told us he had to go, and we were trying to reach the bathroom as fast as we could, but when a three-year-old has to go, he has to go).  On our way out, we stopped to clean up the stairs, then we tried to get Eddie changed and into his carseat.

Now, Eddie is very much like a male version of his cousin, Belle--in other words, he knows his own mind.  He was not happy that we had my brother-in-law's car (a very small sedan with roll-down windows that's sort of a family joke) instead of Mary's far roomier vehicle.  He wasn't happy about that, he was wet, and ... well, his mood wasn't awesome.  I put my wallet and boarding pass on the back of the car to do what I could to help out, and ... well, I forgot about it.

We were about halfway to the aquarium when I realized I didn't have my boarding pass.  I started looking frantically for it, then realized I had an even bigger problem: my wallet was likewise MIA.

Needless to say, I started freaking out.  I wouldn't be able to fly home without my license, it had a fair amount of cash plus my debit card and credit cards, and ... well, yeah, I was freaking out.

Mary was really chill about it, and we started backtracking our way to her work, on the lookout for a red wallet on the side of the road.  The same conversation kept going on in the car, meanwhile.  Repeatedly.

EDDIE: Why did you lose your wallet, Auntie Katie?
ME: Because I forgot and put it on the car.
EDDIE: Why did you put it on the car?
ME: Because I'm an idiot.
EDDIE: But why did you lose your wallet, Auntie Katie?
MARY: Why don't we just focus on finding Auntie Katie's wallet, Eddie?

We got back to Mary's work, and no wallet.  I was on the verge of freaking out in earnest ... I had to teach summer school the next morning, and Mary offered to drive me home, but, I mean, Baltimore to New Hampshire and back?  That would have been cruel and unusual to do to my poor sister.  And so the freak-out was building ...

And then my cell phone rang.

It was Capitol One, and the very nice Capitol One dude told me that he had a caller on the line who had found my wallet.  Suffice it to say, I started crying.  The woman gave us directions to her house, and that was that.

We got to the house, and the couple came right out.  The woman was very apologetic about calling via Capitol One because it meant she'd gone through my credit cards, but she hadn't been able to get a phone number through the online white pages using my name and address, and she didn't know what else to do.  I started crying again because I'm a dork like that, and I thought about offering them money, but they lived in a beautiful brick house with a BMW in the driveway, so I figured that was superfluous.  I have no doubt they knew how very grateful I was, and I sent them a thank-you  note in the mail.

So then we went to the aquarium (which Eddie calls "the a-QUAH-rium", with almost like a British accent), and life was good.  My wallet had obviously been run over (the tire tracks are kind of entertaining) and my license and credit cards are oddly bent and warped, but everything works.

Perhaps the most interesting part of the whole venture was that the couple found the wallet on Church Street.  Mary, who has lived in Baltimore for two years, had never heard of Church Street and was confident that we had certainly not driven on a road called Church Street...isn't that wild?

Anyway, that couple could have taken the cash and returned the wallet, saying it was empty when they found it.  They could have kept the whole kit and caboodle.  Instead, they went WAAAAAAY out of their way to ensure that I got it back as soon as possible.

It's really easy to forget sometimes that most people are inherently good, and that there must be some sort of higher power watching out for us.

I have been praying a lot the last couple of weeks, largely for Mary, and the fact that this experience happened not just when I was visiting her but when I was with her is not lost on me.  Mary received some kind of promising news on her front, and I know that many people are praying for her and sending good thoughts her way.  I can't help but believe that it is helping.

So if you could spare a prayer or positive vibe for my baby sister, who is truly one of the good ones, I would much appreciate it.

I would also be remiss if I didn't emphasize the goodness of my brother-in-law (I'm going to call him Harrison--he knows why), his incredible parents, and his wonderful brother for being such amazing people.

I am so blessed to have family, friends, and total strangers that have had such a positive impact on my life.  I'm glad that I am in a position to recognize that, and you'd better believe I'm going to pay it forward whenever I can.

So do you have a heartwarming tale?  Share it in the comments or leave a link.  Let's keep the positive vibes rocking :-)

Oh, and Eddie did in fact make it to the a-QUAH-rium ... I adore this little guy <3 p="p">

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