Yesterday, as I pulled up to the gate at the back of the Large Suburban High School, I reached into my purse for my school keys so I could let myself in. I park behind the theater, but to get there, I have to get past a locked gate (school safety). It's no big deal, I've got the key, I let myself in, I lock up behind myself...but yesterday, I didn't have my keys.
I searched my purse, and felt a small knot form in my stomach as I emptied it onto the passenger seat. My keys were not where they should be.
I pulled into a parking spot on the outside part of the gate, and sternly told myself to stay calm. After my workout, my purse had been upside down on my gym bag within my locker, so maybe the keys were in my gym bag. Except they weren't. Still refusing to panic, I grabbed my school things and started walking the long way 'round to the front of the school, where the only unlocked-during-school-hours gate is located. I called home, asking Dad to check my bedroom. He even looked in the garage, in case I'd dropped them, but alas, no green lanyard.
The next step was to call the gym. I'm very good about checking the locker and the area where I do my hair and makeup before I leave, but maybe I'd missed the keys. The girl at the front desk was even kind enough to run back and look for me, but...no keys.
I still didn't panic. There were two more possibilities--the tire shop or my office. I called the tire shop as I walked, and got the same answer: no keys had been found.
By this time, I was in the school quad, nearing my classroom. I couldn't get into the office via the choir room, but the band room was wide open for their 2nd period class, so I slipped in that way. One of the drum majors saw me and pointed to my desk--"They just brought that for you!" I looked and saw my familiar green lanyard, and shouted, "Oh, thank God!!"
(It turns out the keys had been there all along, what had been brought for me was a gift of yummy chocolate from my PEST, so the drum major was initially confused at my loud deity-thanking, believing it was for chocolate!)
Seriously, though, I'm so glad I found those keys. I'm usually very good about making sure they're in my purse when I leave, but I was distracted by tire concerns on Thursday. If I'd lost them, it would mean re-keying a whole building. The key that lets me into my room is the same key for the whole of the theater building--all of our classrooms, offices, the main lobby to the theater, etc. Not to mention I have a gate key and a key to the piano lab.
So it's all's well that ends well, thank goodness. Rest assured that from now on, I'll be even more paranoid than usual in checking that I've got my school keys with me.