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Move over, Homer. There’s a new epic in town

March 4, 2011
By S. Alexander Gerould

It was the odyssey Homer and Ulysses could only dream about, a tale full of adventure, fright and a little good luck.

It was – to borrow a widely used Internet word – epic. And, it was the type of tale you would tell your grandchildren and their grandchildren and their grandchildren and … well, you get the picture.

Now that I’ve got you hooked (and my English degree paid off by giving me the knowledge of Homer’s epic poem “The Odyssey”) I lost my car keys the other weekend.

Exciting, I know, but it truly led to an epic adventure.

So sit back, grab some popcorn and prepare to be enthralled with a tale which will truly rival Homer’s epic poetry. I’m sure it’s something all of you will be passing on to future generations.

It all started last Friday when I was getting ready to leave work. Usually, my keys are in one of my coat’s pockets, patiently waiting for the time when they would be needed. I remember patting down the pockets of my coat and jeans and not being able to feel the outline of my key chain.

Hmmm, I thought, maybe I left them in my car.

But, before I could go check, my co-worker Nette and I received a huge number of telephone calls and people stopping in to drop off stuff for the newspaper. By the time I actually left work, I had forgotten all about not having my keys.

After running a few errands after work, I stopped in to say hello to my friend Ashley at the Tap Room, grab a quick drink to kick the weekend off right and then head home. It was around 5:30 p.m., and I planned on heading back to my apartment, ordering a pizza and maybe catching a few hockey games on t.v. (you know, a real guy’s night).

The only problem, as I made my way to my car and put my hand into my coat pockets: no keys.

I was stuck.

What was I going to do? Of course, I was parked a spot over from the 24-hour parking spots which line the lot behind my Main Street office. Just my luck, I thought, as I thought about how I would be getting a couple of parking tickets from the Westfield Police Department.

And, just so you know, I do have a spare key to my car … somewhere.

I thought maybe I had left my keys on my desk in my office. But, Nette and Jim had already left for the night, and there was no way I was going to get inside. Then, I remembered that Jim was supposed to be back at the office Saturday morning, as we had hired someone to finally chip away at all the ice which had congregated above the back door to my office. I gave Jim a call and told him my predicament. After laughing for a bit, he then told me what time he would be in Westfield the next morning and he would let me into our office.

So what did I do next? I went to the Tap Room and ordered another beer.

Then, I walked home, the whole time yelling at myself in my head about how stupid I was for losing my keys.

Later Friday night, I decided to check my Facebook account. After deleting the huge number of Farmville requests I had received, I started to read through peoples’ status updates. When I got to Nette’s post, it said this: “Driving home from work today, I heard something hit the roof of my car &slide down the back window. I couldn’t tell what it was but I could see something stuck there via my rear view mirror. When I pulled over to check it out, I found a set of keys wedged in the seam of my trunk lid. Who would throw a set of keys out there window doing 65 on Route 20? Seriously.”

I responded to her status by saying something along the lines of it was ironic someone would throw keys at her car, because I had lost mine. Then, I went to bed (exciting, I know).

Well, Saturday morning around 9 a.m., my cell phone started ringing. It was Nette. She told me she thought she had my keys and described them to me. Sure enough, they were mine. She said she wouldn’t be able to drive them down to me that day, but maybe Sunday. I told her not to worry about it, because I really didn’t have anywhere I had to be that weekend. Plus, I could take my Dad’s truck if I had to go somewhere.

After receiving a parking ticket, I took the opportunity on Sunday to drive to Dunkirk, where Nette lives, to pick up my car keys. After a stop – of course - at Tim Hortons along the way, I stopped at Nette’s place and grabbed my keys.

It felt good to have them back in possession.

Nette and I still don’t know exactly what happened to set the whole (key)chain of events into motion. I must have dropped my keys near her car in my parking lot. Someone, being a nice person, must have picked them up, and, thinking they may have been Nette’s, placed the keys on her car.

How she made it from Westfield to Brocton without them flying off her vehicle, I’ll never know. But, I think it’s pretty lucky they didn’t get lost somewhere along the snowy drifts of Route 20. Plus, you have to know that Nette told me she almost threw the keys out before happening to see my Facebook post to her status.

Boy, I really am lucky.

But don’t worry, dear readers, I now make sure my keys are in a safe spot when I’m at work. Hopefully, I won’t ever have to go through that ordeal again.

If only Homer were alive to see this epic journey.

Maybe he could pay my parking ticket.

Article Photos

Yes, the author of this awesome column put his keys in the paper because he’s cool like that.



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