Sunday, July 4, 2010
Happy Fourth everyone! To celebrate the fourth of July, I went out with a couple people in my group to go to Long Beach! Looking back, I almost wish I hadn't went, but it makes for an interesting story and I suppose was a good experience.
I arrived at the beach with a group I met on the train. I decided to go swimming while they were talking so they could guard my stuff. But being the paranoid (and stupid) person I am, I tied my wallet in a plastic bag, and placed it in my velcro swim trunks pocket. I dove into the ocean and bobbed around with the waves. When I got out, I realized my wallet was gone. At first I couldn't really believe it. Then I got angry with myself as I realized what had just happened. I had nearly a hundred dollars in my wallet along with my drivers license, columbia ID, room key, credit card, return train ticket, metro card and the works. Also, my cell phone got water damaged because for some reason, I brought that with me, too, and the bag I put it in wasn't tied tight enough.
While searching for any sign of it, I luckily ran into my friends, and just as I was about to call my parents (with one of their phones, because mine wouldn't turn on) they encouraged me to search one last time. So we went down to the beach one last time (I had to borrow one of their beach passes, because mine was in my wallet.) We realized that because I tied it shut, the wallet being less dense than sea water would float; meaning someone probably found it because it would have been floating near the surface if no one picked it up.
Not really hoping for much, I approached the lifeguard nearest to the area I lost it and asked if he had been given a stray wallet. His eyes suddenly lit up and he exclaimed "So you're the wallet guy!" and after asking me a few questions for varification, returned it to me. Amazingly, nothing had been stolen, and it likely hadn't been gone a long enough time for the credit card to have been abused. Thinking about the worst case scenario, I am so incredibly thankful that the person who picked it up happened to be kind enough to try and return it rather than pocket it.
So while there was a time that I was pretty terrified, this turned into a Fourth of July I'll certainly remember. Tonight, I'll be going to Riverside to watch the fireworks. I won't forget the advice the life guard gave me "Never take your wallet into the ocean." Now that I'm somewhat on my own, I need to guard my things carefully. Had things gone slightly differently, today could have caused me and my parents a great deal of pain. Anyways, Happy Fourth!
P.S. If my parents are reading this and want more details about the credit card, I used it this morning (maybe around 10 or 11) to buy train tickets. I lost my wallet around 3:00 and got it returned around 3:20. It's 7:00 Eastern time, and I haven't used the card since. And yes, my phone is still water damaged and needs time to dry. If you need to contact me for more info, try calling Michael or Winston. I also have a cache of money hidden away along with the ATM card, so I wouldn't have been completely broke if my wallet dissapeared. That being said, I'll take great care to make sure it never happens in the future. Anyways, have a happy Fourth of July!