During our minister’s sermon last Sunday morning, I felt the need for a breath mint. I take a medication that makes my mouth as dry as cotton, so I carry with me wintergreen flavored mints.
I quietly opened my purse in order to withdraw my little round box of mints, but it wasn’t there. I looked in both large compartments of my purse, and inside the small zippered section, twice. The mints simply were not there, so I did without.
When we got home from church, I opened my purse for some reason or another, and there, in plain view, was my box of wintergreen breath mints.
On Monday I bought each of our four grandchildren a pair of pajamas. When I paid for them, I asked the clerk to give me gift receipts, which she did. I dropped the receipts into my purse.
That evening when I gave the kids their pj’s, I looked inside my purse for those gift receipts. They were not there. I withdrew grocery lists, cash register receipts, gum wrappers, tissues, and various other papers from my purse, but the gift receipts simply were not there.
Before I went to bed that night, I opened my purse for some reason or another, and there, as clear as day, were the gift receipts for the four pairs of pajamas.
I wanted to scream!
Recently I went to lunch at Panera Bread with two friends. As we sipped our soup and munched on Italian bread, another customer stood and addressed the entire dining room.
“Excuse me,” she said, “but I’ve lost my keys. I know I brought them in here with me, but now I can’t find them anywhere. There are about eight keys on the key ring, and a heart-shaped charm hangs on it. Will you please look around you for a set of keys?”
Forty or so diners rose from their chairs, dropped to their knees, and crawled under their tables to search for the keys. They were not to be found.
I sympathized with the woman. I have some experience with lost items.
I left Panera Bread and drove home.
Later that day I opened my purse for some reason or another. There I saw two sets of keys, my own familiar set and an unfamiliar set attached to a heart-shaped charm.
As the puzzle pieces fell into place mentally, my stomach sank.
I am not believing this, I thought.
Through a gym membership card attached to the key chain, I was able to locate the owner of the keys. I called her and apologized my head off.
Apparently, she and I had paid for our purchases at the same time. She had laid her keys on the counter and I picked them up, thinking they were mine.
I returned the keys to their owner, along with a Panera Bread gift card as an added apology.
What is it with me and my purse? Are my planets misaligned? Am I suffering bad luck from walking under too many ladders and seeing too many black cats? Is Satan so intent on harassing me that he takes my breath mints out of my purse and replaces them with keys?
Earlier today I went to my purse to get my good pen, the one I paid $12 for. I wanted to use it to sign a birthday card for my aunt. Again, I searched every compartment but couldn’t find the pen that is always, always in my purse.
But I am not panicking. Sometime later today I will once again open my purse for some reason or another and there, standing upright and waving its tiny little pen arms, will be my good pen.
I am going to hate reciting this story to a police officer when he asks me to show him my driver’s license.
“You see, it’s like this, officer . . .”