The View From A Slightly Twisted Angle

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The Case of the Missing Wallet

on August 7, 2012

 Our oldest daughter was heading to work last Saturday when she walked into the living room and asked, “Have you seen my wallet?”   I love this girl and she is usually quite responsible,but she is notorious for setting things down where it’s convenient for her and then leaving them there until I nag her to death or she needs it again for something.  If you moved said object  in the interim then in her mind it is YOUR fault she can’t find it.  Makes sense right?  Doesn’t to me either but I quit thinking “teenager” about the time I gave birth for the first time.  Rolling my eyes I informed her that I hadn’t seen it but I imagined it was right where she left it last.  “It’s probably in my car.” she said and scurried off to work.  I figured she was probably right.  Much to the annoyance of her father, she leaves everything in her car: books, receipts, wrappers, the lawn chairs she borrowed from us a month ago….you get the drift.  Both my husband and I have talked to her in the past about leaving her wallet in the car,  particularly because she throws it in her cup holder where everyone can see it.  She’s looking at a college located right outside Dallas.  I’ve informed her that unless she loses this small-town-girl habit she might as well put a sign that says “Smash Me” on her window.  But then what do moms know??

Saturday evening when she returned from work we asked if she’d found it in her car.  No she hadn’t, but she wasn’t worried. It must be up in her room.  Uh huh.  The hunt was on.  Her father sister and I assisted in tearing apart her car, her room, her sister’s room….we even checked the garbage in case it was accidentally thrown out. Ok – her dad checked the garbage because he is the better parent.  No wallet anywhere.  At least now she was starting to act a little concerned. I asked her where she last remembered having it.  Ummmm….she just wasn’t sure.  She’d stopped for gas two days earlier.  She just couldn’t remember anything else.  This is where my CSI talents kicked in.  I’m a huge fan of detective shows you know.  Here’s a sample of how smooth I am:

“You took it inside to pay for your gas?”

“No. I left it in my car. I used a check so I didn’t need it.”

“You didn’t need it?”

“Mom they know me.”

Sigh”When you got back in the car was it there?”

“I don’t know. I think so.”

sigh. “Close you eyes….you got back in the car….”

“Mom! This isn’t Criminal Minds!”

Yeah.  No one appreciates me.  I would like to point out that my “memory questions” did help her younger sister remember that she stuck it in the console of the car after band practice Friday morning.  That was the last anyone remembered. I’ll never be a FBI agent….even on tv.  My daughter texted her band instructor.  He didn’t remember seeing it but would check on Monday. No one in the school office on the weekend so there wasn’t too much we could do at that point. It would have to wait until Monday.  “But I can still drive as long as I don’t get pulled over right??”  Um….WRONG!  No license – no driving.  Simple. Now she was worried.  I’m pretty sure things got cleaned in her room that haven’t been seen in years.  Still no wallet.

By Sunday evening the girl was starting to crack.  “Dad bought me a car wash. It really isn’t that far to go there.I don’t want to waste it” “No. It’s good for a month.”  Grumpy teenage girl look.  Doesn’t scare me. She ended up going for a walk with her father and I around an area lake.  “I just need to get out of the house!”  Right. Because a day is soooooo long! Finally by Sunday evening she said, “This is like being grounded.”  I grinned, “You grounded yourself.”  If she was expecting sympathy she was barking up the wrong tree. She figured that out fairly quickly and began to research on-line what to do to replace a lost license.  Luckily she turns eighteen at the end of the month so she was going to have to renew anyway.  This was just going to cost her an extra fee.  A fee her dad and I weren’t paying. That didn’t make her too mad. No. What made her mad was when she said, “The DMV is open at 8 on Mondays.” and I replied, “We’ll go when I get off work tomorrow.  You are on MY time now.”  (The DMV is located in a town about 20 minutes away.)  Some days it really is fun being a Mom.

Yesterday afternoon the girl was panting by the time I got home. She ready to go get her license replaced. It had been TWO whole days you know.  To her credit and my amazement she did use the day of “grounding” to clean the house a little for me.  Yes.  She still knows how to suck up.  She’s pretty good at it really.  I drove her down to get her replacement license. She was delighted with her new one…delighted with the picture (I didn’t know that was possible)…delighted that she could drive again.  Life was happy in her 17-year-old world once again.  I’d called and cancelled her debit card before anyone had tried to use it so no damage was done other than to mother’s nerves.  She still had her checkbook – Whew! Everything else wasn’t that important and easily replaced.  She joyfully went out and bought a new wallet using the gift card she just got but HADN’T put in her wallet yet.  God is merciful on the unwise.  She found one on sale that will attach to her keys and has a place in the back for her phone.  Good idea. I know she always knows where her phone is.  Well….usually.  Guess she did lose that once too. She HAS never lost her keys.  Odds are in our favor.  I hope. If she loses this one it’s going to be a great big mess.

Last night I was informed that the 14-year-old’s wallet has aparently gone AWOL also. She had a buck in change and a library card.  Not worried.  Last time she’d seen it? When she left it in her sister’s car. Sigh. Our girls, daughters of the great CSI agent want to be, suddenly said, “Hey! The back passenger door doesn’t lock automatically. I bet it was open because we’d been giving people rides home from band camp.”   See? Somehow this becomes the parents’ fault.  It doesn’t matter if they should have known better than to leave their wallets in the car. If we’d have bought her a better car that actually locks right… not really. She never said that. She loves her car and can now drive it again so the world is a happy place.  It’s a good thing too.  The whole mess has given me a headache.  I may need her to run to the store for me….


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