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I took two friends, richly steeped in the past, for a coffee and chat in Newmarket last Wednesday. We savoured our coffees during a pleasant hour with lots of talk of history, recent as well as long-past events.
My younger brother dropped by to add to the mix and retrieved over 500 snowdrop bulbs/plants (which I had scavenged from the ditches). He will guerrilla plant these in suitable places where they will surprise next year’s walkers.
In dealing with a few phone calls during our visit, I left my seat a few times and that should have alerted me, considering the well-worn clothes I tend to wear and what I carry in my pockets.
After the coffee time, we drove our eldest friend back to his apartment and then headed for Bradford, where both of us live. On the way, we had a stop by the canal because I wanted to show my friend a nesting pair of geese that I had met days earlier.
While walking, we even managed to collect some beer cans and scored some fresh air and nice pictures of geese.
Having completed the walk, I brought my friend back to the waiting arms of his wife, and lunch. On my drive home, I happened to check my back pocket and shockingly noticed that my wallet was not where it was supposed to be. A moment of panic was followed by the customary verbal self-flagellation.
Then, being deductive, I tried to reconstruct where I possibly could have dropped it. Naturally, the first stop was retracing my steps along the canal and although no wallet was found, I did find two more beer bottles. The goose appeared to be giving me the raspberry. Canal walk done for the second time, I had to rush home because I had borrowed the car and it was overdue.
At home, I used the internet to find the phone number for the Tim Hortons in Newmarket where we had reposed. It was easy to find and came with a phone number attached. However, when things go wrong, they go wrong in spades, it appears. By calling that number, Bell informed me that it was not a valid number. Grrr! That failure to connect by phone necessitated an immediate return trip to Newmarket.
A 20-minute drive later (why do all lights appear red when you are in a hurry?), I walked into Tim’s and asked the nearest management lady if they had found a wallet. The response was affirmative. Phew! Then she said that she thought it belonged to a woman, which left me nonplussed. Two lost wallets in two hours? In describing my slim, flat wallet, she agreed that it sounded like the wallet they had, and it had been found in the booth we had used.
Much to my joy, she brought out the correct wallet with all the cards intact. They had thought that it belonged to a woman because it contained a picture of a woman and her two young children. Their first thought had not been about a man who had carried a picture of his favourite people in his wallet. An easy mistake to make.
In any case, all’s well that ends well and the horseshoes are still firmly implanted. Many thanks to the honest people working at Tim’s. There still are lots of good people in this world.
The cash in the wallet was "lost" before I had it returned with no idea where it went. Whoever found the wallet, thank you. No cash is the price I clearly had to pay, I guess, for being non-observant. Cosmic justice. Unfortunately, having no cash meant that I could not reward the deserving Tim Hortons people. When next we visit, I definitely will have to remedy that.
Albert Wierenga, Bradford