As our wedding anniversary was soon approaching, my dear, sweet husband announced, “I know what I am giving you for our anniversary. I want you to pick out any cell phone you want.”
Hearing this unexpected news, I was silenced, but managed to quietly utter, “Oh, how nice and thoughtful.”
Immediately my mind raced in only one phone direction, the iPhone 5.
Just think, “Siri” could answer all my questions, and “Speech Recognition” would be great, but perhaps a close up “Face Time” would not be wise at my age.
The door had been opened to buy the phone of my choice, and I was going through that door.
Once in the cell phone store and 30 minutes later, the white thin phone and the accessories were in my bag. I was somewhat puzzled as to why a manual did not come with the phone.
I did not need a manual, I was told. Instead, I was advised to ask my friends and family if I had a question, or seek help from my computer.
For the first week, I wondered if I had wisely chosen that particular phone. After all it was almost three times as much as my husband thought it would be.
Oh, well, my 6- and 8-year-old niece and nephew were a great help.
One morning, I thought it would be fun to take three of our young grandsons to McDonald’s for breakfast. As we arrived at the restaurant, I urged for all of us to get out on the same side of the car so I could keep them together.
Suddenly, one of the 5-year-olds crossed the lane in front of a car that was heading for the drive through lane.
“Stop look and listen,” I loudly repeated over and over again.
With my heart still pounding, but all safely inside we ordered then took our trays to a table.
After taking about three bites, I looked around the table. One of the boys was gone. Where could he be? The 7-year-old slowly said, “He’s probably in the bathroom.”
I jumped up and headed for the ladies room. ... Not there. We always go to the ladies room.
The other two brothers ran into the men’s room. All came out and the lost grandson said, “They disturbed me going to the bathroom.”
I looked the boys in the eyes and with a steady but strained voice said, “Please don’t leave the table without asking to be excused.”
After encouraging them to eat quickly, I hastily threw the trash in the bin then made sure we held hands tightly to the car.
Now that they were safely buckled in their seats, I really didn’t want them out again, but I had earlier mentioned that a visit to their aunt’s home would be fun.
Nearing her house, I realized the phone was not in my pocket.
Now speeding to her driveway, and with my voice at high pitch, I began yelling, “Boys get out of the car, run into the house, tell your aunt that I can’t find my phone and am going back to McDonald’s.”
Where was it? Was the anniversary phone gone forever? I burst into McDonald’s, with eyes wildly looking where we had sat.
“Aha,” I thought.
The trash bin was the only other place where it could be.
A lady asked to call my number. Out I pulled the big trash bin, and with head down, I began digging.
Did I hear my ring? Yes, yes, yes. It was all the way at bottom, but I had found it.
Holding it high in the air, and then clutching it while saying a prayer of thanks, I realized the entire restaurant had become involved.
Suddenly, a man appeared in front of me with quite a concerned look and said, “You know you really should be more careful.”
Giving husbandly advice seemed appropriate to him at the time, I guess.
Once the anniversary phone was lost, but now it was found. Oh yes, Mr. Husband of someone. I will be more careful. Also, dear husband of mine, I will be more careful.
Helen Childress Sander, a Columbia native, lived and taught computer science in Raleigh, N.C., before she and her husband retired to Charleston.