The Mystery of the Rockford Wallet

Acting goofy at 6am at the Sanford airport after waking up at 4:30am and getting a ride from one of our generous neighbors

Day 1: Thursday 6/16/16
Sanford, FL to Rockford, Il
7:25 am flight, ~1000 mi, 2 hr 22 min flying

Our good friends Kyle and Margo from Orlando moved to Rockford about 4 years ago. It has a university where Kyle teaches and a ton of arts and music, which Margo is involved in. Rockford has about 100,000 people and another 200,000 in the surrounding area.

There are a lot of abandoned old brick factories next to the Rock River. Oh and there’s a lot of geese poop. We went to cross on a foot bridge under a car bridge, but it was closed. When I looked down I saw a wallet. I picked it up and a guy’s ID was inside and a mystery afoot. It had the address of his apartment building and so we decided to drop it off.

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I guess we could have gone to the police station to drop it off, but since it was around the corner we stopped by and called up to his apartment, but he wasn’t home. We called the office manager and still no luck. We got the emergency maintainance person on the phone and they said they’d have someone call us back. No one ever did.

We met Margo for lunch and sat right near the mayor. It was great being with Kyle and Margo; even though we don’t see them often, they’re the type of friends that you just jump back in and no time has passed.

Margo had to go back to work and we had to return Tom’s wallet, so we went to the police station, starting episode 2 of the adventure. We wandered around a bit and located a very discreet sign at the courthouse indicating that the police station was inside. We allowed Kyle, as the Rockford resident, to take the lead on this home town mystery. Was this going to be a drop-off situation? We sure hoped so. But alas, it was not to be. Kyle kept an active text conversation going with us as he waited in line for 22 minutes before abandoning the quest. Anyone who knows Kyle knows what’s coming next – a poem from this conversation:

Patience, patience, wearing thin.
This indeed: the state I’m in.
Not breaking out, but can’t break in.
Wallet found! It’s here! You win!

And Nathan’s response:

Down by the river
I spot a little sliver
of a wallet whispering come hither
to my owner take me thither
in your hand you hold the quiver
of the way I can be deliver’d

We decided to hop back in the car and do one last pass by Tom’s apartment tower, with the backup plan being to put it in the mail since we had his address and had no desire to wait in line again. It’s tough being a citizen and trying to do the right thing sometimes. A building manager was there this time. In fact Tom had been there just a few minutes earlier, worried about his lost wallet. The manager gratefully took back the wallet and was able to give it back to him. Mission accomplished!

What an adventure, and this was only the first few hours of our visit in Rockford. We were heading to Madison later in the day and were excited to see what else would be in store.

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