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Long-Lost Wallet Returned, Complete with Cash

…lost money, how would that affect you?

Three years ago, trash collector Harold Walls lost his wallet, which held $800. It turns out, though, the wallet wasn’t really lost—it was on vacation. And thanks to a Good Samaritan, Walls finally has it back.

Walls had assumed he dropped his wallet while collecting trash one morning. He and his partner retraced their steps. Alas, no luck.  “I wrote it off, honestly,” Walls told DelawareOnline.com of the wallet and money, which he’d planned to use to buy a TV. “Ain’t no sense in harping about it or crying over spilled milk. Keep moving.”

walletIn 2012, the truck Walls and his partner used was retired by the city and sold at auction to a farmer in Maine. The farmer took apart the bench seat in the truck’s cab and, lo and behold, he found the long-missing wallet. The farmer mailed it back to Walls, cash included. “I was real surprised it came back with everything. … It happens to restore a lot of faith that there are still some good people out there,” Walls said.

You hear about stuff like this happening but it’s definitely a rare occasion.  I would have a hard time recovering from an $800 loss.  Walls seemed to take it all in stride.

Losing money is one of the worst things that can happen in my opinion.  I don’t mind so much if I lose money by betting on something or spending it on something foolish and then having a bad case of buyer’s remorse, but to just plain lose it really bothers me.  Thankfully I have only lost my wallet probably 2 times in my adult life.  I have lost cash that I put in my pocket or placed in an envelope at home and then misplaced the envelope.  …I just hate that!

Last week my family and I went to Walmart to pick up a few things.  On the way there my wife gave our oldest son of 10 years, the $10 he earned doing extra chores around the house.  He and his younger brother were excited to get money at the same time we were at Walmart.  They usually get their money at home and then are “encouraged” to put most of it in savings.

Once we arrived at the shopping wonderland that is Walmart, my son exited the car, cash in hand.  As soon as he realized he had his small fortune out where everyone, including the Ninja robbers, could see he immediately put the two five dollar bills in his pocket.

As we wondered through the store, going to every department except where the toys are, both boys were going on about this action figure and this toy truck and how maybe they had enough for a new M-42, full auto, battle rifle with anti-zombie exploding darts and night vision sights.  It’s at that moment when we heard a muffled argument between the junior shoppers.

He reached in his pocket and it was gone.

It turns out that during the discussion of what wonderful new toy they could purchase, the oldest reached into his pocket, to once again count the two $5 bills, …you never know when they might reproduce in your pocket, and found nothing but an old button and some pocket lint.  Frantically searching all of his pockets, with the help of his brother, he let us know that the hard-earned ten bucks had mysteriously disappeared.  Pockets inside-out, with his brother still searching his back pockets, he looked up at me with sad eyes and said “Dad, I lost my money”.

“Where did you put it?” I investigated, knowing the hard fact that it was gone forever.  “Right here in my front pocket, I don’t know what could have happened.” “Let’s retrace our steps and see if we can find it” I said with a less than optimistic tone.  We walked all the way back to the car, following the way we came into the store, without finding even a stray penny.

After some apologies and consoling my wife and I gave the “You have to keep better track of your money” speech and went back in the store to finish up our shopping.

Now our son didn’t cry about the money being lost (I wanted to) or complain about it “not being fair” and demanding that awe give him another $10 to replace the money lost.  He took it all in stride like Mr. Walls when he lost $800, not happy about losing the money he worked so hard for, but he didn’t make it the end of the world either.

What a proud moment for us as parents.  We try to instill in our kids, through example, that there are far more important things in this world than money and it has evidently sunk in.  While both boys were upset over the whole ordeal, by the time we got home everything was good.

They spent the rest of the day playing with their new M-42, full auto, battle rifle with anti-zombie exploding darts and night vision sights.

…It’s not against the law for a dad to buy a toy for his kids once in a while.  …Get off my back!

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