Left the house this morning around 11:30 for a therapy session followed by an early call (early afternoon) for work. In between I had 1/2 hour where I stopped in to a Century 21 for some holiday shopping. Then I hopped on the PATH to New Jersey. I was bundled up against the cold with a T-Shirt, thermal shirt, sweatshirt and a scarf under my winter leather coat. I had my tuxedo jacket for work in my hand and a backpack with the rest of my clothes and shoes. I actually had trouble navigating the department store because I was twice my normal size, and at one point I bumped a woman with my backpack which elicited a *tsk* and a heavy sigh. I was thisclose to telling her to get over herself, it's a week before Christmas and you're in New York City. People get bumped. I got bumped too. If you want to shop where there's room go to the fucking Mall of America.
As I arrived at the employee entrance of the hotel I realized suddenly that my tuxedo jacket was missing. I illogically checked myself, wondering if I had somehow put it on without realizing, but I was already far too overdressed. Then I assumed I had left it on the counter at the department store when I paid for my purchases, until I had a clear memory of going out the door with my jacket still folded over my arm. So where the hell was it?
At this point I remembered that while I was waiting for a PATH train I had decided to get out my newspaper and glasses. Since I needed to get them from my backpack I put down my shopping bag and draped the jacket over a metal barricade. And that's where my jacket most likely still was. In the PATH station of the World Trade Center back in NYC where I left it. I went up to the banquet office where they generously told me I could work anyway and then offered to lend me a jacket from someone who had a spare. Although part of me wanted to go back across the river and retrieve the jacket, it would have made it impossible for me to return in time to be helpful for the event.
I told everyone I intended to go back to the station after what turned out to be a fairly short shift. Mostly everyone seemed to think the jacket was gone, and while I didn't disagree, I thought maybe ...
As the shift only lasted a few hours, I was originally in the PATH station at 2:00 and by 8:20 or so I was back. I returned to the platform and unfortunately, the jacket was gone. As I turned up the stairs and headed towards the exit, I spotted "a" jacket, randomly hanging on a pole near the stairs I had come up. There was kind of no way it could be anything other than mine.
And it was.
I have no idea who picked it up from the railing and why. It is kind of dirty (I work around food) and not a designer label or anything. That may be the reason it was ultimately rejected. But I got the impression that whoever picked it up decided to hang it conspicuously in case the owner (me) returned to find it.
And I did.
The idea that it would be left on a platform where literally thousands of people pass by, and that someone would leave it on the chance that hours later, after thousands more people passed by, the owner would return and find it, is pretty amazing.
But I said the whole afternoon and evening that while I wouldn't be surprised to find the jacket gone, I would also not be at all surprised to find it still there.
Only in New York, Kids. Only in New York.
And no, I still haven't solved the problem of finding a place to board Riley next week, but I have been in touch by phone with a kennel downtown that has space still available, and before I head down there tomorrow I am meeting a man that lives less than two blocks away that boards dogs for a living, and he seems to think he will be able to take Riley. I know it sounds sketchy but he already has four other dogs staying at the same time and I think after talking to him on the phone that we may have met before at the dog run.
One way or the other it seems that Riley will have a roof over his head and two squares a day while I'm gone.
So that's good.