Editor’s Note: For the remainder of June we will be counting down our 10 favorite columns as we celebrate summer vacation. Coming in at number 6 on our countdown is a column from April 22, 2015.
The other day I did something that I have never done at a Ballpark, and hope to never do again.
That something was becoming separated from my wallet.
Through the years I have attended games at many Ballparks from Little League to Major League and every league in between.
At each of those games my wallet and I remained attached at the back pocket from the time I entered the Ballpark until the time I left.
Sure the wallet would come out from time to time to purchase concessions or souvenirs but after each transaction was completed the wallet would return to the security of Mr. Pocket despite the discomfort of sitting on a wallet on a hard plastic seat.
For some unknown reason during a recent visit to Minute Maid Park my wallet decided that it no longer wanted to be in my pocket and decided to venture out on its own.
I did not realize that my wallet had gone on a walkabout until I was standing on the lower concourse after leaving my seat on the upper concourse.
Upon first realizing that my wallet was no longer tucked safely inside my pocket, my first thought was that perhaps I had been the victim of a pick pocket since several people had bumped into me during my trek through the mass of humanity within the facility.
My next thought regarding my lost wallet was that perhaps I was not the victim of a pick pocket and instead it had fallen out somewhere along my journey between the highest point of the Ballpark and the lowest.
I decided that the only course of action was to retrace my steps and hope that the needle that was my wallet could be located within the hay stack that was Minute Maid Park.
As I began my sprint back to the upper deck I allowed my thoughts to drift to the worst case scenario that at that very moment someone had my wallet and was up to no good.
While I was certainly not hoping for a worst case outcome, I knew that I needed to prepare myself in case that turned out to be what happened.
I knew that in this scenario whatever cash I had in the wallet was gone along with my driver’s license and credit cards.
There was nothing I could do about the lost cash, so I focused on the credit cards and who I would need to call to report the cards as stolen. While it would be a hassle to call them I knew that it was the only way to protect myself in the event the cards were stolen.
Ironically it was not the potential loss of cash, nor the loss of the credit cards that had me the most upset.
The thought that troubled me the most as I ran up the three sets of escalators, was that I was going to have to go to the Department of Motor Vehicles to get a new driver’s license.
It is sad that the DMV was the place I most dreaded, but as anyone who has spent an afternoon waiting in line can attest it really is a fate worse than lost cash or credit cards.
Speaking of the escalators, as I approached the usher at the top of the last one he looked briefly like he was going to tell me not to run but I must have had a look of either shear motivation or madness that told him to step aside and let me through.
Clearly I was a man on a mission.
About a hundred or so paces from the escalator was the tunnel that led to the section where my seat had been.
After turning the corner and entering the tunnel I saw another usher holding something brown that looked surprisingly like my walkabout wallet.
As I got closer I could tell that the light at the end of the tunnel, or in this case the brown object in the usher’s hand, was in fact my wallet.
Although I was out of breath from my multilevel sprint I managed to utter the words, “That is mine, thank you.”
Without a word in return the usher gave me my wallet and I turned around to head back to the lower concourse.
All of the worst case scenarios that I had feared, including that trip to the DMV, were no longer in danger of coming to pass.
My wallet, complete with cash, credit cards and driver’s license was once again safely in my pocket.
I still do not know how my wallet managed to extradite itself from my pocket, nor do I know exactly who found it and gave it to the usher.
What I do know is that someone in Section 410 of Minute Maid Park did the right thing and turned a situation that could have been very bad into something very good.
While I certainly don’t wish the stress of a sprint to find a lost wallet on anyone, sometimes it is those things that are needed in order to see the big picture.
Even though newspapers and television newscasts seem to be filled with only the stories of all of the bad things happening in the world, now and then it is important to be reminded that there are still good people in the world.
So to whoever found and returned my wallet last Saturday night I say, “thank you,” not only for the return of the wallet but for also showing a complete stranger an act of kindness and compassion.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I am off to buy some shorts with a Velcro closure on the back pocket to keep my wallet from further unapproved walkabouts.
Copyright 2015 R. Anderson