Friday, May 04, 2012

Misplaced Items and Memory Glitches

Items can be forgotten in the blink of…
No matter how often I pat myself down or mentally go over my list of belongings, all I need is one crucial distraction to send me on my way without a precious item. I still pine for my favorite pair of Ray-Bans from years ago, lost on a bus somewhere. Or was it at that friend's house? Wait, no. She had my favorite mix tape. Wait, no she didn't, and I asked her if she had it so many times she isn't talking to me. I was certain she had it. Good thing I didn't ask her about the Ray-Bans.

Sometimes it is like that. We have an image in our mind of where we lost an item and we can't shake it. We probably set them down somewhere stupid, but we think they are someplace sensible. One could almost say we become fixated on them. The other day I was CERTAIN that I had brought my wrist weights home with me after a late night walk. However, I can't find them anywhere and they probably were left on the platform when I was taking movies of freight trains last week. I can see them underneath that odd glowing art ball they installed on the platform, but my mind keeps telling me they are in the garage.

They aren't.

Unless I can install RFID trackers on all my belongings and have them set off alarms when I walk away from them, I must live with losing them. Heartbreaking, but true. Then sometimes I can get lucky.

I took my two youngest girls to get new eyeglasses last week. I'm not sure what distracted me, but I left the office without my Boredom Survival Kit™. I didn't get very far before realizing my mistake and I called the office immediately. Unfortunately, they had gone home. I called them at every variation of their phone number, getting all the empty offices and the fax machine. But never a human being. I had to live without my journals, iPad, pens, and various implements of entertainment for a night. Assuming I had actually left my satchel there. What a horrible feeling.

There was a time where something like that would keep me up all night, but I slept rather well. Instead I was up at the crack of dawn calling them again. I got the receptionist who had a vague familiarity with English. It didn't help my anxiety.

"Hello, my name is Douglas Cootey. My daughters and I were in your office last night, and I left my satchel on a chair. Can you find it and set it aside for me?"

"A sah chell?"

"Yes, a satchel. A black satchel."

"A black sat shell?"

"A satchel. Yes, a satchel," I said with a thousand angry Irishmen screaming for vengeance in my ears. Then I paused. "A bag."

"Oooooooh. You left a bag. I will go look."

A moment later and I breathed a little easier.

"Yes, we have your bag. We will be in the office until only noon today."

"That's fine; I'll be right there."

"We close at noon."

My Irish kinsmen began to clamor for blood again, but I simply hung up and let them help me peddle the two miles over to her office. I zipped in, swept right by her, and grabbed my bag. I didn't bother explaining myself. The Irishmen were finally tuckered out and I didn't want to rile them up again.

Ah, my bag. And my iPad. And my journals. And my heart stopped pounding.

I don't often misplace items and leave them in optometrists' offices overnight. That was a new one for me. I won't repeat that anytime soon.

At least I hope I don't. I did misplace those weights. And the o-ring on my drink bottle has wandered off. You don't think my friend has it and my mix tape, do you? I should call her.