Losing my recorder … and my beans
Sometimes, being absent-minded is a pain in the tuchas. Here’s how this week’s misadventure by yours truly started: I arrived at the 25th annual Relay For Life of Woodford County just as it began and began taking photos and interviewing survivors. The goal was to tell at least three of their stories and get a few good photos of them and the other folks and sights at the Woodford County Park. Stories were told and recorded on my semi-new digital recorder, photographs were taken, and greetings were exchanged with old and new friends. All was well. I was touched by their tales and excited about the story I would write Monday. However... Things went south after that. The following day, Sunday – which is intended to be a day of rest, mind you – I went to the Hughes House for a ceremony marking the 204-year-old home’s recent inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places. I couldn’t find my recorder, but as I’d only planned a photo and cutline of the home this week, I wasn’t too worried. That afternoon, I looked in my home and office for the recorder. I even gave my car a thorough vacuuming, after ensuring that the nozzle was a bit smaller than the missing recorder. I was now a bit worried, but figured a few more searches would turn it up. I was wrong. Monday was a frantic day for this absent-minded reporter. I called the Versailles Police Department, Relay Chair Freeman Bailey and the Falling Springs Arts and Recreation Center to see if anyone had found what I had lost. I went home several times, each time thinking of a new place the recorder might be. All this time, the clock was ticking faster and faster, like my heart. I spent a good portion of the day trying to track down at least three of the four people I’d interviewed Sunday. (Randy and Lori Nation, thanks for helping me find Katheleen Most. John James, sorry I couldn’t find you. Maybe next year?) In the end, a story that should have taken a couple of hours to write took most of the day, and, truth be told, probably isn’t as good as it would have been had I not lost my recorder … and my beans. It’s a heck of a thing to tell a reporter, or anyone, I suppose, about a frightening time in your life. Several people did so Saturday night, and, on behalf of our Dear Readers, I want to thank them. I have always been a bit absent-minded and have sometimes paid the price. For instance, when I was stationed at the Naval Training Center, Orlando, I lost my military ID once too often for my public affairs officer. She showed a bit of mercy, though, as well as the sort of ironic sense of humor I enjoy, though I enjoy it more if it’s not at my expense. Lieutenant Commander Nettie Johnson sentenced me to a week of guard duty, two hours each evening, checking military IDs at the base entrance. I never lost another military ID. Back to the present. Tuesday morning, playing catch-up, I received a call from someone whose name I will not disclose. She asked how much of a reward I was offering for my recorder. Excited, I asked if she’d found it. She hadn’t, and I guess I’d forgotten that I’d told her of my plight the day before. All I will say to this person for now is that payback is a five-letter word. Anyway, while my recorder was lost, the stories of Mary Beth Kiger, Melissa and Maddie Gregory and Katheleen Most weren’t, thanks to their patience. My thanks to them for giving me a do-over – and my apologies to all those offended by my higher-than-usual level of irritation Monday. Hey, at least I remembered to vote the next day.