car keys .. a modern fable
It’s not hard. A man gets up early, has a cup of tea, checks the sky, feels the wind and decides to go.
The beach is about three quarters of a mile long and the mission is to walk one lap and halfway back have a swim before returning to the car and driving home. That’s the drill. But not this time. This time our man reached his car and found his car keys weren’t in any of his pockets.
Now he must jog back to where he dropped his shorts and towel for the swim to spend ten minutes rooting around in the sand while trying not to look like an idiot rooting around in the sand for a set of lost keys because there was a middle-aged couple not far away who were both nude and quite interested in this unfortunate state of affairs .. I mean, who wants one of them to come over and ask if they could give a hand?
The rooting was fruitless.
So, it’s back along the beach to the car hoping the keys will be in the ignition but why, you ask, didn’t he do that earlier? Answer is this particular gentleman is fast approaching four score and at that ripe age a man tends to let his thoughts randomise and sail on the winds of his imagination.
The keys were not sticking out of the ignition, were not left on the car roof and still not in his bloody pocket. One check is never enough, you know? Subtle autism, it creeps up on you.
.. it’s back down to the beach again – the nudes are still there at halfway point, watching – to reach the sea wall that borders the southern end. There’s a pathway up there that leads all the way back into town, about three miles. This requires walking. Our man is barefoot. Things begin to hurt.
A taxi back with a set of spare keys. Bless the wife, she remembered where she put them. Rob’s the driver, local man, likes a chat so he learns of our man’s misfortune. Finally they arrive at the carpark and as Rob pulls in alongside the car with no keys he says, gazing out of the window at the tarmac, ‘you’ve got me looking for them now.’
Then he wound his window down and peered a little closer at a spot not ten feet away.
He says hangonaminute, climbs out, walks over to the spot and picks up a set of car keys.
Says, ‘here you go.’
The wretched facts.
The keys were taken out of the trouser pocket prior to the swim and dropped into the upturned hat with the sunglasses and T shirt. When the sunglasses (with straps) were retrieved after the swim and dry-off the entangled keys dropped out unnoticed and into the folds of the T which was then wrapped in the towel prior to our man journeying back bare-chested to the carpark where they dropped out onto the roadway not ten feet away from his car.
Which means our man stepped over them (number 1) as he retraced his steps to the beach to find himself under the soporific gaze of the two middle-aged nudes mid-way along, and after that fruitless exercise he returned to his car to see if they had been left in the ignition – which meant he walked over the keys again (number 2) – which they weren’t so what to do but turn around, walk over his keys again (number 3) and begin the three mile walk back to town.
That so help me is how it happened and how Rob earned $30 on top of the fare.