Sunday, February 11, 2018

Photograph Your Wallet Contents

You may already know this but if you don't then you might want to do it.

Get out your wallet and photograph the front and back of everything in your wallet. File the photographs somewhere you can find them. Preferably at home. If you have a safe, then print the photographs and  lock this info up in your safe with other important papers.

Just tonight I received a sad phone call from my departing company.

An old friend has been visiting for a few weeks helping me out extensively.  What an angel!

Tonight he called to let me know he arrived alive, but minus his wallet.

He was driving down a highway when he suddenly needed a restroom. He pulled over at a little gas station, paid $20 in cash for gas, used their restroom, went out, pumped his gas then drove away.

Another 15 minutes or so down the road, he somehow realized his pants didn't feel right.

No wallet!

U-turn and zipping back down the highway to the little gas station. He searched the restroom, asked the clerk, searched the bushes then drove away again.

Minus his wallet.

He thinks it fell out of his pocket in the restroom.

Sadly, he had no emergency contact or even his own phone number in there such as the "If lost please return to... card" that comes with many wallets. I asked him if my calling card or anybody's business card was in there and he said no, he doesn't think so. He had $67 with him, fortuitously no credit cards and only one debit card and a stack of grocery discount cards. I've known him for decades and he does keep his life simple. He was able to reach his bank to cancel his debit card.

I asked him did he write down the gas station he was at, to keep calling them back every 8 hours or so (shift changes) in case someone found the wallet and turned it in as lost. It's possible  the wallet might turn up by a good Samaritan that might find it minus the cash. Sadly he didn't think to do that and he is vague about where he might have stopped.

Sometimes not so honest folks keep the cash then toss the wallet.

Others might take the wallet and try to track the owner down, but with nothing to go on, no phone numbers no cards and an out of state license, well that might be difficult unless they miraculously mail it back to him using his driver license address.

Stranger things have happened.

About a year ago he received an envelope in the mail with $35 cash in it but no note and no return address.He speculates that maybe the owner of a lost wallet sent it to him though it's still a mystery where the money came from. He said about a month earlier he had found a wallet then used the driver license address to mail it back to the owner with cash, license, credit cards and so on. He doesn't remember how much cash was in the wallet when he mailed it back but he just figured whoever lost it would want it all back again.

Twice when I was workamping I found lost wallets and managed to return them to the owners. Once by mail, since I couldn't find a number for the kid who was 16 and had just acquired his license the week before. His wallet was so new you could smell the leather and it wasn't molded, like wallets become after riding around in a hip pocket for so long. There was no cash and the lining in the wallet was so spotless, I don't think the kid had ever had a dollar in it. I've often wondered what he thought when his new license and wallet came back to him in the mail a few days later.

Another time a guy turned up where I was workamping asking about a wallet that he thinks was thrown out in a bag from a fast food place by mistake. He said while he was out boating, he hid his wallet in the fast food bag then later when he returned, he threw the bag out because it had other garbage in it. He forgot he had hidden his wallet in there until he got home.

I helped him dig through the garbage looking for it. We found the bag but not the wallet. Then I said "Hmm, there is a couple that comes by most evenings pawing through the garbage looking for aluminum cans to sell. Maybe they found it. I will ask them when I see them next." I got the guy's phone number and he was sure I was nuts thinking I would get his wallet back.

Well, the next day, the couple turned up looking for cans. I ran over to them and asked  if they found a wallet the day before. They had and it was at their home. Amazingly they drove home, picked up the wallet, brought it back to me, I called the guy and he drove 2 hours to come fetch it. He was astonished to see it again!

So we're hoping on good karma that some miracle might reunite my friend with his wallet. You just never know.

Amazingly my friend was in good spirits because he said  in 70 years, it was the first time he had lost his wallet.

Well I guess that is looking at the whole mess optimistically!

Now I've got to run, because I am going to photograph my wallet contents and stick a note in it "If lost please call this number."

My wallet is fairly simple too. One ID, one bank card and a stack of my calling cards. The rest of the wallet is those crazy discount cards for stores. I hate those things, but if one doesn't have them then one is charged higher prices on certain items. This is a shopping complication that drives me batty. I prefer simplicity.



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