I just got home from my nightly after-work stint at the Chapters bookstore… well, actually, the Starbucks within it. I spend about 75% of my non-work life reading there. But something so weird [and hopefully funny?] happened there tonight, as I was leaving.
In anticipation of the nearly Absolute Zero temperature out in the parking lot I thought I'd go start my car and then come back in where it's warm. I shut down the laptop and left it there at my table in my backpack. When I re-entered the store I walked around and looked at books for a few minutes. My God, there are so many good ones waiting to be bought! Admittedly, I got a bit distracted.
Imagine my reaction though, when I finally walked back into the Starbucks area, and while still a ways off… looked over to see one of the barista girls reaching into the top part of my backpack, taking out my wallet, and sort of… looking through it.
I was stunned. In fact, my initial reaction was a sort of embarrassment for her, coupled with a thought in my head [real loud] that could be verbalized as "What in the frigging hell are you doing?" I just sort of stood there a bit, and then approached her. She looked up and said, "Oh! Is this yours?"
Before I could even respond, these two elderly ladies sitting at an adjacent table piped up and said, "We told her to check because we thought maybe there was a bomb in there."
What? A bomb? Now I was really confused -- but at the same time, I laughed. These two ladies had sat down while I was browsing books, and seeing an abandoned backpack, immediately went to the Starbucks people and said it looked suspicious, or something.
So I began explaining that I had just left it there to go and start my car outside to let it warm up -- and now all three of these females were berating me for leaving valuables behind like that. I had never really given it a second thought, I guess. One of the ladies then asked me if my car was LOCKED as it idled outside, and I said, "Nope!"
They gave me this look like I had just arrived on planet Earth from Mars or something.