I went to the bank a day or two ago, and was at the table they have for getting your checks and papers in order before you head up to a teller. I wasn't really paying much attention, and set down my purse.
On another purse.
There was no one else around. I picked up my purse, looked around, and piped up, "Is this some one's purse?" Nothing. That's odd...
I looked, and the purse had lots of cards, bills, and such. I looked around again, expecting someone to charge up and claim the thing. Nada. So, with trepidation, I picked up the purse with the same sort of hold you'd use on the tail of a dead rat, and again piped up, "Is this some one's purse?"
So, I went up to the teller, and gave her the purse, telling her I'd found it on the table. She looked flabbergasted, and profusely thanked me, saying that not everyone would do that. I shrugged, and told her I just thought the person would be worried about it.
So, I had to go to another teller about a bit of business, and SHE piped up and said how that was so good of me, that not everyone would have given it back. Uh... OK, thank you. She commented on this at least a couple more times while we were doing my banking.
Then a smaller lady comes rushing in, looking panic stricken. I point at the teller I'd given the purse to, and she nearly leaps over the ropes to the front. It was hers, and after an i.d. verification, she had her purse returned, and left a happy lady.
And I was happy for her. But sad that so many people would assume that a purse sitting there would just be an open invite. Maybe it is.
But it's still sad when my actions were considered unusual.
(In other news, Happy Birthday to Mike Campbell, of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers!)