Within seconds of arriving at our AIRBNB in Paris, I had lost my phone. It was a brand spanking new Iphone 6 with no insurance. Call it a matter of ego, I had gone through my entire college career with the same student ID, despite being broken in half and having a barely discernible photo of myself. I thought of myself as incapable of losing anything important.
I had always been extra careful with my cell phone during my travels. Warnings from my parents and other travelers had cautioned me about getting your phone stolen, and I heeded their advice almost to a fault. I slept with it on my body and kept it cradled in an inner pocket at all times while walking. I whispered sweet nothings to it at nighttime. As a solo traveler, your phone is your world. It's your camera, your contact with your friends and family when your lonely, your GPS, your distraction when you are waiting at the terminal, your form of research, your choice of food, your best friend. I was entirely too heartbroken when I left it in a cab and lost it at no fault to anyone but my own.
Without a receipt or a taxicab number, I had no way of getting in touch with my cab driver. My only course of action to take was to use my FIND MY IPHONE app and write him a message in French with my friend Justine's number for a contact. He reached out to Justine and left a voicemail, so in my eagerness, I wrote him a note of gratitude that you can see below. I imagined him returning to the apartment we arrived at and blasting a boom box in his arms, "Madame! I found your mobile!" He would shout, and I'd slam open the window in gratitude and cry with elation.
None of that happened.
Not even remotely.
He left no number in the voicemail so I was never able to get in touch with him. Justine's phone, being in France, had little to no service and missed the call entirely. I rewrote my FOUND MY IPHONE message to include my email. No response. Instead, a little while later I got CATFISHED worse than a fat kid in Iowa. They hit me with a false ICLOUD email saying that my phone had been located. It took my APPLE ID password and released the phone from my account so that it could be unlocked.
I ended up having no phone for the remainder of my trip as I traveled solo through Paris, Rome, Amsterdam and Greece for well over a month. Joke's actually on you Cabbie guy - my sense of direction has gotten so much better now! RIP IPhone6. You left me so soon.
Thanks to Google Translate I was able to write in French:
I wanted to thank you from the bottom of my heart for returning my phone. I've been traveling for two months by myself and each photo means so much to me. You have no idea how thankful I am. Please let me know if you are ever in New York, you will have a friend in me.