What would you do if you found a wallet on the sidewalk as you walked to work? That’s the question that I had to answer yesterday morning.
I’ll admit, the first thing I did after stopping to pick it up was to check and see if there was any money in it. I think that most people would instinctively do that. There was none, but I also like to think that wouldn’t have changed my next decision at all.
Although there was no money or credit cards, there were plenty of ID and bank cards. This wallet needed to be returned to its rightful owner.
I looked him up in the phone book. No number. I looked on Facebook, and I think that I might have found him… but a few hours after sending a message, there was still no response. I turned to Twitter to see if anyone knew him. Then someone suggested that the Police might be able to help. Fine… I’d do it the old fashioned way.
I saw that his address was in Quispamsis, so I called the Rothesay Regional Police. They checked to see whether he had reported it missing. He had not. I told them that I could drop it off to them on my way home, but because it had been found in uptown Saint John, I had to report it to them instead. OK then.. the big shiny new Police HQ is now open directly across from my workplace, so I walked over there to give it to someone.
If only it was that simple.
“I found this wallet when I was walking to work this morning” I told the girl behind the reinforced glass in reception. She backed away and put her hands up like I was trying to give her a bomb. “No, I don’t want it. You have to call dispatch and file a report“. I’m standing in the lobby of the SJ Police HQ… I just want to give it to someone.. anyone…
There’s a phone on the wall with a direct line to dispatch. After answering a bunch of questions, and giving them my location as “down in the lobby” I was told that an officer would be dispatched to me… So I sat down.. and waited… and waited.. and watched different officers come and go.. and waited some more… Finally a young officer came out and asked me MORE questions, finally accepting the wallet and saying “We’ll see if we can track him down“.
“Shouldn’t be too hard. His address is on his ID.”
What a pain in the ass. I should have just taken it to him myself on my way home.