Lost and Found – Part III

Today’s Writing 101 challenge – to continue the lost and found theme with an imaginary piece about being in charge of something like a lost property office…

It is not easy to find the Lost Property office at the mainline London station where I work. A plethora of signs direct you to platforms, toilets, telephones, the ticket office and a choice of exits to street or underground. You need to concentrate hard to find the first sign, and maintain a sense of purpose as you wend your way around various obstructions and distractions to reach the office door. This has been reluctantly painted dark blue, and the paint is trying hard to leave, peeling at the edges.

My job is very satisfying. The look of pleasure and relief on people’s faces when they are reunited with their possessions is payment enough. Well, not really – don’t tell my boss this, but you get my meaning. You only have to think back over the times you have lost something important and how it made you feel. There are feelings of panic, despair, sadness, frustration and anger depending on the specific situation. You  may have lost  a practical item, something of great monetary value, or a possession with incalculable sentimental value. But there is another category of lost property…

In a dark corner of the large store-room is an old tea-chest covered in dust and cobwebs. The items stored here are hardly ever reclaimed. I think their owners often do not realise they have lost these fine, elegantly engineered pieces of equipment. This is the final resting place for moral compasses, once owned by politicians and leaders in the world of finance and banking.

The irony of losing something designed to prevent you getting lost is not lost on me.


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