Yesterday morning, shortly after I got up, I went to run an errand. When I opened my purse, I couldn't find my wallet and, or course, started to panic a bit. I ripped apart my car, looking in every nook and cranny (even the trunk, because I had put groceries in there the evening before). Nothing.
I knew it wasn't in the house, because I had gotten home late, dropped my stuff, and went straight to bed.
So, I began to re-trace the few steps I had taken the evening before after work. I went to the grocery store (called them... nothing had been turned in.) Called my friend who I had been with last night (nothing, and we hadn't left her house.) She texted another friend who had been with us and I called the other (nothing, and nothing.)
Then, I left to pick up a friend's dog from the dog kennel as I had promised and decided that, when I got home, I'd check every nook and cranny of my car again (nothing). At this point, my best guess is that I left it in a cart at the grocery store becuase I had been in a hurry and distracted... and if the store didn't have it, I probably wasn't getting it back (stupid, I know.) So I canceled my cards.
About 90 seconds later (literally) there was a knock at my door. There was a teenage girl there, and she was holding my wallet in her hands. It went something like this:
Me: I'm going to hug you. (I didn't, though - I didn't want her to feel awkward.)Although I had just (within 90 seconds prior) finished canceling my stuff, that was the least of my worries at this point - I can easily get those back. Instead, I was happy, thrilled, etc... for a number of reasons. 1) I knew my stuff had been with someone safe. 2) I like my wallet - I bought it for a reason. 3) My panic level went from 20 to 0 (on a 10 point-scale) 4) I didn't have to go and get a new ID, and most importantly 4) there are good people in the world - and this teenager who was obviously taught to do the right thing, and knew to call her mom to find out what to do... and that they went out of their way to bring it home to me without wanting anything in return (they wouldn't take anything - trust me, I offered.)
Girl: I found this in a cart I was returning at the grocery store and we didn't trust that the store would get it back to you. I tried to call a number I found online - did you get the message?
Me: No, I didn't - but I'm so happy to see you. (it turns out the number was my parents house. I got a worried call from mom later in the day)
(I walked out of the house and down the steps to talk to her and her mom, who was waiting in the car)
Her Mom: She found the wallet and told me about it and wasn't sure what to do.
Me: I'm going to cry, I'm just so happy to see it again. I hope you didn't have to go out of your way to bring it to me, though!
Her Mom: No, I had to come to the bank in town, anyway. I'm just sorry we couldn't bring it to you last night.
Me: I wouldn't have been home anyway. I was at a friend's for girls' night and didn't get home until 12:30 - I didn't even know it was missing until this morning because I never opened my purse after I left the store last night!
(I think I went on and on about how I was going to cry I was so happy and that they made my day and blah blah blah... and I'm pretty sure the mom started to tear up because I was.)
Once I had collected myself I remembered that when I had been at the store, a woman in front of me at the self-checkout had dropped $20 on the floor - and I had tapped her on the shoulder and said 'Ma'am, you dropped your money." Maybe this was my payment back for doing something nice for her?
Call it restored faith in humanity. Call it karma. Call it beauty in the world. Whatever you call it, it made my day. And I went and did something nice for someone else after that.
So, I encourage you take an opportunity to make someone's day. You won't regret it.