Tuesday, 5 July 2011

The Wallet Incident

Firstly, I recently had the single most terrifying moment of my life. More terrifying than leaving the resort on Fraser Island in the middle of the night to look for dingoes. More terrifying than firing a shotgun or riding a horse through a creek. More terrifying than the moment on the coach on the way back from the Woman in Black trip when the lights went off. You get the idea.

I left my wallet in a shop called 'Hot Dollar' in Sydney, where I bought a pen which could have turned out to have cost me all my money, all my Dad's money, my provisional driver's license, all my luggage (the locker reciept with the access code to my luggage was in the wallet) and basically everything except my passport, a copy of Percy Jackson and the Battle of the Labyrinth, and some orange tic tacs. I discovered this loss only an hour before my train was due to leave for Perth, a three day train journey across the outback. I was supposed to be at the station an hour before departure, but instead I was running frantically down George Street, knocking into pedestrians and panicking more than I have ever panicked.

As I dashed into Hot Dollar, I asked the check-out man and he said he had not seen a wallet. For a minute there, I was sure that in the next hour I would have to a) go to the hostel and get them to break into the locker with my luggage in it, then b) go to the bank and plead for a new card, and c) ring my cousin in Melbourne in tears and explain how I had lost everything, and finally d) ring my dad and explain that I had lost his emergency credit card and he must cancel it immediately. If by some miracle I then managed to actually get on the train, I would have to live on orange tic tacs for three days.

Luckily, my Canadian friend Brooke who accompanied me on the mad chase down George Street asked the next check-out man, who asked me to give a detailed description of the wallet "Black! With a clasp shaped like a padlock," before he handed it to me. Needless to say, I got on the train and within the next six hours or so my heart rate returned to normal.

"Phew" doesn't even come close.


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