Today however everyone was busy with other things and I found myself with a day off – always dangerous. I got up early and did some chores then thought I’d have some breakfast at a café.
I walked down into Newtown and it was strangely quiet, very few people up and about.
There was a beautiful little drum kit in the window of one of the second-hand shops and I thought one of my friends might like to buy it for their child so I took a picture. It was so cute and reasonably priced. I thought I’d post it on Facebook.
I had a nice meal, bought some beer at the supermarket and headed home – I was thinking all the while about what I was going to write about for this week’s story.
As I was approaching home there was a wallet just sitting in the middle of the footpath. I looked around and there was no one I could see that could have dropped it. I picked it up and put it in my bag then forgot about it.
I put the pic of the little drum set on my Facebook wall and a friend of mine said she’d love it for her young son so I gave her the details and reached for a beer. I pulled out the wallet.
There were a number of credit and bank cards, a driver’s licence and about seventy dollars in cash, a name but no phone number or address. I didn’t fancy going all the way into town the central police station on my one day off so I posted a message on Facebook to see if anyone out there knew her.
The response was incredible.
A bunch of people got busy with Google or whatever and we found her Facebook page and I tried messaging her and got no response. There was one friend that we had in common on her friends list and I messaged her. Meanwhile one of my other friends had tracked down her address through the alchemy of the internet.
Turned out she lived quite close so I went up to her house clutching the wallet like a grenade – I just wanted to get it to her before she cancelled her bank cards and whatnot and so I could just get on with my day.
When I got home there was a message from the mutual friend who had tracked the owner down by this time – she and her partner were over on Matiu/Somes Island for the day and she had no idea she’d even lost it. She had asked for my phone number.
I got the call and she was really grateful and happy, still on the island. She said her partner had been getting messages on his phone though social media about my post and that’s how they learnt the wallet was missing. Result.
Some people ask me why I ‘friend’ total strangers on Facebook. This little story is part of why and they don’t always remain strangers for long. I got so many great positive responses to my post about the wallet and we all clubbed in and solved the problem – it blew me away.