I went to the Post Office and, while there, photographed some postcards I was sending to legislators. After I went to the window to buy some postage, a young woman handed me a phone and said I had left it on the counter. I thanked her profusely, and thanked my lucky stars because the phone was only a few weeks old, and already we had become quite attached.
I put the phone in my coat pocket and went to Walmart. As I was checking out at Walmart, I started hearing a beeping or ringing. I looked at my phone, my watch, and my hearing aids. Nothing was ringing. I turned off the hearing aids. The ringing became quieter, so I figured it must be something in the store. I went to my car. The ringing persisted. I checked all my known devices again. Still, not a clue.
Then I determined it might be a psychotic episode of some sort. I’d google the hearing aid manufacture when I got home. No, wait, the hearing aids are off. If people can hear voices, maybe they can hear phones ringing.
When I got home, I made a phone call. As the phone was ringing, someone started knocking on my door. At first I thought it was a delivery person and that they were leaving a package. But as the knocking became more persistent I determined I better go to the door.
An irate young woman was there. She screamed, “you have my phone.” I had my phone in my hand and looked at the familiar image of a painting by Matisse that I had as a screen saver. No, I said, this is my phone. Then she said that her phone was in my house.
I said, “wait… let me look in my coat pocket.” Sure enough, it was there. I handed it to her and explained some woman had handed it to me, thinking I had left it on the counter. She said she knew that and had been chasing me from the post office to Walmart to my house. I told her I was so sorry. I didn’t tell her that, maybe now, I won’t need to hear a phone ringing that I can’t stop.