One of the symptoms of age seems to be cynicism. As a cabbie you get to see the best in people and unfortunately their worst side. Some fares don’t pay, these we call ’bilkers’; others treat you like an idiot; and others are just plain rude.
So after decades of dealing with the public, often against your better judgement world weariness and scepticism unavoidably just creeps in.
[S]o when recently I lost my Filofax (yes! I still own one), my reaction was to assume it was inevitably gone for good – that is to say stolen – never to be seen again. I resigned myself to having to stop my credit cards and re-writing my diary, notes and other ephemera picked up over the years.
By a simple deduction in Hercule Poirot mode I narrowed the loss to the counter at Waterstone’s in Bluewater.
Now if you have ever tried to contact a store by phone you will appreciate my trepidation. Usually you are kept on hold, cut off or redirected to the wrong department. My personal experience is that the phone just remains unanswered.
What a surprise, answered on the 3rd or 4th ring, by a person who listened to my tale of woe and then went off to make enquiries.
The Filofax was soon located deposited in a secure place at the back of the store.
“Would you like to pick it up, or should we leave it with the concierge?” was the polite enquiry.
I drove back to the store in a delirium of joy. Was reunited with all my possessions intact and treated with civility. Well done Waterstone’s.
Just one thing keep the apostrophe in the name when you re-vamp your stores, will you. Thanks!
As a footnote: 12 years ago I was ‘mugged’ in Bow Common Lane and had my bag snatched. The next day I received a phone call from a warden of the adjoining estate to say he had found my Filofax – devoid of money of course. We searched the estate and just as we were leaving somebody called out to us from the first floor to say that a bag was on the roof above the entrance. Both the warden and the kind woman who allowed us into her flat to retrieve the bag had little money that I could see. It just goes to show there are many decent people out there.