I would like to think that the willingness to publicly admit having done something Really Fucking Dumb shows a certain degree of character. Perhaps it even marks a refreshing acknowledgement of one's limitations and fellowship with the other sometimes confused mammals we know as Homo sapiens.
On the other hand, it might just be a kind of psychological masochism.
In any case, there I was yesterday, having returned to London from a very fine time at a crime history conference held at my university and making my way to the place where The Wife and I will be staying for a couple of weeks in scenic south London. And what do I do? In a not entirely explainable momentary lapse of reason upon disembarking, I left my suitcase on the train.
Although I realised my mistake within seconds, the doors had closed and the train was already in motion by the time I made it back through the gates.
Yes, this is very stupid.
But it is even more stupid than you think: this is the second time I have done this in the last few years.
Indeed. I am a singularly silly boy.
To make a long and wearisome story short, all is well that ends well. Thanks to the extraordinarily kind, competent and sympathetic assistance of three employees of Southern railways, I had my suitcase back within a couple of hours.
I had the opportunity to thank all of them personally (and wrote a letter to the company commending their work).
However, my gratitude is also due to the unknown fellow passenger who saw me leave the train without my suitcase and who handed it in a few stations down the line, allowing my agony of frustration and self-loathing -- while intense and certainly justified -- to be brief.
Thank you. Whoever you are.
The next couple weeks in this exhausting city will most likely dim the temporary glow of fellow-feeling that that experience gave me.
But still: it has been nice while it's lasted.