Not only was Dan due home today, but Minerva, my little Mini Cooper, was due for her first service since I ponied up for the first service contract in my life. I thought she was just going in for an oil change, but the service manager clarified that the reason the little picture of my car on a lift came up on my dashboard along with the brake light going on meant that the brakes were in need of repair. Usually, they give me a generic vehicle to use as a rental and keep my car for hours, but today, they gave me a 2018 BMW with so many buttons and screens I was not sure how to put it in gear. I still had more than an hour before I needed to head to the airport (all of five miles away) to pick up Dan, so I stopped at a Marshall’s on Military Trail. It wasn’t that I needed anything; it was more that I didn’t want to be driving around, and I kind of did want to get a look at this car that cost more than the first house I bought.
While browsing around in Marshall’s, a woman went scuffling by the end of the aisle, clearly in a big rush. I heard something fall to the ground, but she was still moving, so I went to the end of the aisle to retrieve whatever she had dropped. It happened to be her wallet, the little kind that’s just big enough to hold your license, a credit card or two, and a few dollars. I picked it up and called after her, and though she was grateful to get her wallet back, she must have really, really had to go to the bathroom, so I pointed her in the right direction and went back to browsing.
A few minutes later, she scuffled back down the aisle again, telling me in broken English that in her rush to find the ladies’ room, she’d dropped her wallet again, and she was frantic. She went off in the opposite direction, and I decided to go the way she had come, just in case she was too distraught to see it. After one round through the store, I was heading back a different way, when I heard her crying to a man who may have been the manager. Just then, I saw the tiny wallet in the aisle a few yards in front of where I was heading, so I sped up and scooped it up before anyone else could. Just as the manager was beginning to ask her the inane questions, “Are you sure you had it with you?” that make people feel at once infuriated and insecure, I called out to let her know I’d found it again. I handed it over to her and walked away, thinking I was glad she had it back and hoped she’d hang onto it this time around. A minute later, she came down the aisle I’d ended up in, obviously seeking me out, and she hugged me and thanked me profusely. Maybe someone else would have found it and returned it too, but it sure didn’t seem like it based on the shoppers around me, so I was grateful to have been in the right place at the right time today to help this stranger not once, but twice. Best of all, by the time I got to the airport and as Dan was coming through the arrival gate, the service manager called to tell me Minerva was ready, and I didn’t have to drive the rental car home and bring it back the following day. That’s never happened before, so it was a nice end to an adventurous morning and the sixteenth day of this journey of gifting.