Someone Found My Stuff
No one ever calls me at 7:25 am. Everyone I know is asleep at that time on a Saturday morning.
The Caller ID said the 323 area code, so I figured it was one of my neighbors in the building calling about the letter I put on everyone's door yesterday.
When I woke up about 9:00-ish, I got the message.
It was a woman who said she had found an envelope with a bunch of my paperwork in it. It has my address and phone number but she states she didn't look at any of it. Some of it looked important, and she wanted to get it to me.
She lived in Echo Park. She tried to give me her phone number to call her back - but she couldn't remember her home phone (?). She keep messing up the last few numbers. So she gave me her cell phone number.
I called her. "Oh, thank you so much. I really appreciate this. I would really like to come pick these papers up."
She said "Well, some of them look very important. I was wondering how you lost these."
I replied "My car was broken into. They took a whole bunch of junk out of the car, including the papers"
We made plans to meet at her house at 11 am. Currently she said she was out having breakfast with her sister-in-law.
At 11 am, I find myself driving into Echo Park - into the hills that are North of Sunset Blvd. A tiny little road. If a car comes from another direction - one of you have to pull over to let the other one pass. No sidewalks. Very nice houses.
Rustic Echo Park.
The road is so little and narrow, and I'm near the end of a cliff. I ask a bald-headed biker type if he knows where the street I am looking for is. He is watering the lawn and trees around his property.
"Keep going, you'll see it." He says.
I finally find an address close to the number I am looking for. A fancy house, way up on a steep slope of a hill.
That person has to carry groceries up the side of the hill, all the way up those steep steps to get the groceries into their house.
I stop in the car in front of the house, and call the woman on my cell phone.
"Hi, its Donna. I am at "Number Such & Such" on your street. Where is your house?"
She says "Oh, I can see you from my window. Your in a convertible, right. I will be right out."
From the very nice large rustic house across the street, walks a woman, late 40s or early 50s, very nice casual sweater and slacks.
Obviously who has some money in the bank, the way her hair is and her clothes are. She looks like she would be a professional business woman. I am guessing working in a Bank, or maybe a Human Resources Professional. She has a cute little cocker spaniel
type dog with her.
She has in her hand a Manila envelope that was in the trunk of my car. I recognize it as the envelope that I had some copies of my medical records.
I say "Oh, thank you so much. I really appreciate this. This is so great that I am getting this back."
I look in the envelope. It is just not my medical records from my trunk. It is papers that were in the glove compartment.
It is my acting 8x10s that had been organized in the plastic binder.
Its is anything personal from my car.
But now it is all neatly enclosed in this one Manila envelope.
"This is really weird", I think.
I thank her profusely again.
She says "Some of those papers looked really important. I saw you car registration in there. But I didn't look at the papers - I just got your phone number from them. How did you lose such important papers?"
She seems very interested in the "How".
I point to the top of my convertible. The soft upholstery top hanging down where the thief made his slash with his knife.
"Someone broke into my car the other night. They went through and took a bunch of stuff. These papers, and mainly junk. Well, the key-card to my office. But they mainly got just junk."
She is leaning in and looking at the slash, her eyes wide with interest.
I had thought about asking her more details on where she found it. I had thought about giving her some cash for her trouble, even though she really didn't need it.
But I didn't care at this point. Something was hitting me funny, I just wanted to be gone. She knew enough about me from the papers and I just wanted out of there.
So I said "Thank you" again. And I drove off.
I figured I would mail her a Thank You card with a small gift certificate to a bookstore in it. So as not to be ungrateful for her effort. Maybe she was just a Good Samaritan. An innocent bystander. Doing a good deed.
I looked at the Manila envelope. It was totally clean, in the same condition it had been in my car. All of my paperwork and information neatly tucked into the envelope. Nice and organized.
I am pretty sure it had been kids who broke into my car. I mean, they took a plastic binder and a bottle of hand-lotion. Along with my paperwork. (But not my denim jacket. Maybe they have enough nice clothes already.)
I just don't think kids would put all my paperwork neatly in the Manila envelope and leave it where someone could find it.
They would just trash it. Unless they read my medical records and freaked out.
But - an adult would put everything neatly into an envelope. Its strange.
I decided to make a stop at my bank. I drove to Studio City .
I told the Customer Service Rep what happened to my car.
"I still have the ATM/Debit card. But I can't remember if there were any receipts in my trunk."
Her advice was to cancel this card, and get a new one. I got some cash for the weekend.
I then went to Good Earth Restaurant . I felt like breakfast. I told myself if I found street parking right on Ventura Blvd, I would then eat at a restaurant.
With the hole in my roof, I wasn't parking in a back lot.
Once inside Good Earth, the Host made a fuss about my purse. He loved the kitty-cat design. He has a friend who loves cats,and he wanted to know where I got it.
I leaned over and whispered "Kmart".
"No!" he couldn't believe it. "How much?" he asked.
"Around Ten bucks I replied".
He kept feeling the purse, its a really nice vinyl.
I told him "Kmart has some nice stuff."
I relaxed, had breakfast and paged through the LA Weekly .
Stopped off at Pep Boys . I thought they would have beige upholstery tape for convertible. But no, they have no upholstery tape in stock. Only break-light tape, and hose tape. Basically it seems like if you have problems with the upholstery of your car - don't go to an auto repair place.
I stopped at Rite Aid and got some clear duck tape.
At home, I patched up the roof with the duct tape until I can get it fixed.
Then I pulled apart my Manila envelope. The car registration the woman had noticed was buried within the stack of paperwork.
So she had pretty much seen all the paperwork.
And then, at the very bottom of the stack. My Employee ID. Gee, I work for a music company. The thieves didn't think they could use this somehow ? Kids. But the key-card that was attached is gone.
I talked to some friends about the incident. I can't help but wonder if she knows the person who did this. Her son ? Her nephew ? (She was having breakfast with her sister-in-law.) She was so interested in "How" these papers got lost.
It made me wonder if she is trying to figure out what her son or nephew is up to. Maybe her sister-in-law found the papers in the trash. Maybe she suspects he is up to trouble and is trying to figure it all out.
But it is all just my active imagination. My suspicions. No proof.
I feel like a Detective. And I am not very good at detective work. I've got a bunch of the papers back, and thats all I care about. I want this episode over and done with.
Chances are she is a Good Samaritan who found the envelope laying around somewhere.
I will mail her a Thank You card, and maybe a gift certificate to a bookstore.
And then I will forget about the whole thing.
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