Tuesday, October 01, 2013

Weird stuff

My car keys went missing today.

We had just entered Morrisons in Cribbs Causeway. My mother was pushing the trolley, there to do her shopping for the week. Just past the PR mist squelching the vegetables I routinely checked in my cardigan pocket. No keys.

Only mildly alarmed, I checked my jeans: wallet still there, mobile phone in the other pocket and that's it. I now entered the unreal world of the totally-unexpected:
  • denial ('this can't be happening') combined with 
  • aversion ('make this go away!'). 
Where are my car keys???

My rational module took control.

  • I addressed my mother thus: "I seem to have mislaid my keys. You carry on shopping and I'll try to find them,"
  • I retraced my steps back to where we entered the store, looking carefully on the floor and under the racks,
  • I worked on plan B: (call Clare in a minute, get her to drive the 25 miles from Wells bringing the other car key, take my mother & shopping back in a taxi).

Still no sign so I reported my loss to the store people (they also had a fruitless look) and then it occurred to me (far too late) to wonder whether I still even had a car. Back to the car park and there was no-one wandering around flicking a key fob and looking for flashing lights ... my car was still there. ('Should have immobilised it,' said Clare later).

Finally I returned to my mother, now halfway through her shopping. Without hope I looked in the trolley - nothing - then into her two rolled-up shopping bags.

There, in the bottom, my car keys.

So, I had helped my mother out of the car, then retrieved her shopping bags from the back seat, locked the car with the fob (I distinctly recalled this as it's something I mentally check afterwards) ... and then my memory is a blank. My reflex is to put the car keys in my pocket: it's what I do.

Why then would I have subconsciously put them in a shopping bag?

Clare teased, suggesting my mother 'dipped' me, 'planting' the keys for a laugh; my own thoughts turned briefly to quantum tunnelling, but there are just too many zeroes.

Everyone has been very quiet about the D-word.