24 hours can turn into an eternity when waiting for a phone call. Just ask any teenage girl. Showing age again. That was the 70’s. Now they wait for someone to appear on Facebook or to return a text. Having never really left the 70’s, I was waiting diligently, as instructed, for the phone call from the Metro North to report my computer and briefcase found, safe and sound. 24 hours can also give one pause to consider the options at hand and decide how to proceed. But I digress. For all of you out there contemplating calling DCYS for abandoning child #2 in Bridgeport while chasing down a computer, please know that although it wasn’t easy, a lovely lady by the name of Liz (thanks again Liz!) did in fact retrieve child number 2 and escort her to safety
I, on the other hand, spent the majority of Monday by the phone, waiting…waiting…waiting for nothing but my computer. This is where the options took hold: either I could decide to continue my previous day melt down, exhausting all around me, or I could decide at this juncture to do the mature thing, repeat the serenity prayer I often revert to (See image) and channel positive thoughts. I channeled away, muttering positive thoughts and commanding those around me who dared cross my path to do the same. Numbers are everything in this game, and I’d seen it work many times before. When, by Tuesday the phone did not ring, as much as I willed it to, I took matters into my own hands and hopped the train, muttering positive thoughts maniacally like a patient who’d eaten her last dose of Thorazine, down to the Lost and Found in Grand Central Station. And there it was. After about 30 seconds of checking the computer and being told not to get my hopes up, my steely eyed “I will eat you for breakfast and spit out your teeth if you let me down” stare must have done the trick because before my very eyes, as the very nice man who I truly apologize formally to for my latter bad behavior, and then further teary eyed gratitude (at which I may have insisted that he “hug it out” over the counter, though I won’t cop to it formally), reached into the big burlap bag which had obviously not yet made the step into the locked box which they’d promised me it would be in, and pulled out my briefcase, computer intact. And our little blue cooler which I’d not realized I’d left, given the heft of the laptop fiasco. So what is the message here, you may be asking. How to take this experience and grant it significance beyond the obvious “you are a moron and cannot be trusted” self-tirade? Because truly there HAD to be a message here somewhere, a lesson worth growing from. This is my conclusion:

  • People screw up. I’ve forgiven myself (2 weeks later). One could argue the subliminal message line that it was my passive resistance to leaving the city. That’s just goofy.
  • There is merit to positive thinking and The Law of Attraction, beyond the woo-woo
  • Naysayers’ be damned. Darned.
  • Back-up, back-up, back-up

But really, the most significant message to me at least, as hokey as it may sound, was that of good will. I truly believe in the intrinsic goodness of (the majority of) man/womankind. Not only was there a good possibility of my computer being scarfed on the train ride itself, abandoned, alone and vulnerable, but there was even more opportunity of it disappearing into any of the many hands that transported it off the train, onto the transport carts, into the bag and then again into the Lost and Found office…into an unlocked bag. As much as I’d love to believe in my powerful ability to warp time, melt objects and cause teeth to rot from my superhuman powers, at the end of the day,
it comes down to the simple things we so often forget about: faith, trust, and the goodness of humankind. Ok, and maybe a little luck. There is no marketing message here, beyond perseverance. Had I not taken matters into my hands and hopped the train, who knows what a few more days might have resulted in. I choose not to think like that, but rather to believe that we are all in this here world together, and as we have heard on NPR and our own personal neighborhood stories from so many in the aftermath of Hurricane/Tropical Storm Irene, people do come together in times of need, and when given the chance, rise to the occasion, to be there for each other and do the right thing.



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