Things always have a way of working out

I've been traveling on business for over 15 years, and while I've lost things like power cords, shaving razors, and paperwork, I've never lost anything critical. My luck ran out last week in New York, but only temporarily.

I was in the Big Apple for meetings, and I stayed out late with several coworkers for what was probably our last big night on the town. When our party dwindled to two, I should have taken it as a sign to go to bed, but I didn't. So my friend and I left our hotel for a neighborhood watering hole. While the place closed down at 4am, we got wise and closed out our tab shortly before 3am. We hailed a taxi for the ride back to the hotel.

I had set my alarm for just after 7am so I could get a run in before meetings that day. I took a quick shower to help me wake up, put on my running attire, and took off for Central Park. I love running through Central Park--it's such a beautiful park and reminds me of Piedmont Park in Atlanta. Prior to leaving on my trip, the forecast had predicted a week of rain, but this morning was beautiful, sunny, and a crisp 58 degrees. I didn't want to run more than 5 miles, so I did the best I could to map out my run the night before.

The run was great and just what I needed. I made it back to the hotel shortly after 8am, took a shower, and got half-dressed. I packed up my bags and then did some work before my meetings.

I received an email from one of my customers wanting some information, so I went to get my cell phone. I looked for it next to my wallet, in my pants pocket from the night/morning before, and then I went into panic mode after realizing it wasn't plugged into my charger. I called the front desk to ask if anyone had turned in a cell phone, and again, no dice.

My meetings were only a half day, so afterwards I went back to my room to look again. I turned the room upside down with the same result--no phone. I did find the receipt for the cab fare from the ride back to the hotel, though, and it had the cab's medallion number. So I called 3-1-1, New York City's phone number for access to government services, including the Taxi and Limousine Commission. I explained that I may have left my cell phone in a cab, and after a chuckle from the operator, he transferred me to the dispatcher responsible for that medallion number. The dispatcher was able to give me the name of the owner/operator and his phone number. I called the owner, and he explained that he drove the day shift while someone else was driving the overnight shift. He needed to check with the driver, so he took my name and phone number and promised to call me back with news either way.

When I got back to my office, I had a voice message from the owner saying that he had my cell phone! So what are the odds? It's less than a week later, and I now have my cell phone. I was floored that I wasn't asked for any "compensation" to have it returned to me. In fact, he was reluctant to give me an address where I could send a token of my appreciation, but I insisted. My opinion of New York City cab drivers has been forever changed while my belief that things always have a way of working out has been made stronger. And while I wouldn't want to live there, I do love New York.