Saturday, July 9, 2011

An Unexpected End to Our Vacation

In this blog post I had expected to tell you about the wonderful time we had at the quirky Wayne Chicken Days, and how great The George's Bed and Breakfast in Dixon is. Unfortunately, we didn't get to experience either of those great Nebraska places.

We left the concert at the historic Sokol Auditorium on Thursday night flying high. The Tossers and the Dropkick Murphys had put on a great show, The Mister had experienced his first mosh pit and we had all come away relatively unscathed (why do 300 lb guys always mosh the most boisterously?), overall the crowd was extremely well behaved and it was a good time.

With everything we had to fit into our day on Thursday, we had arrived just as the local opener finished up their first song. The sold out concert was already pretty packed, and parking, already at a premium around the Sokol, was filled. We circled until we reached 16th Street and parked under a street lamp in front of a neat row of houses. It was quite a walk back to 13th, but not too bad as everyone we met was in a good mood anticipating a fun evening of music. There were kids playing in the front yards, and while definitely working-class and a little run down, we didn't think it was unsafe.

Imagine our surprise then, when rounding the corner of 16th at 11pm to find only a pile of broken window glass where we had parked the truck... Our brand new 2011 Ford F150 crew cab that The Mister had purchased less than a week previously, with right at 1000 miles on the odometer, I might add. Hoping that somehow we had overlooked the broken glass when we parked and that the Omaha Police had for some reason towed it, we began making phone calls.

No luck... No reports of towed vehicles. By 2 am, we had called our insurance agent (at home... Gotta love Nebraska), filled out the police report and taken a cab back to out hotel downtown. After a sleepless night, we started doing everything else that needed to be done. At thisnpoint, I should tell you that, because we were running late, we had only made a brief stop at the hotel on the way to the concert. A quick change of clothes and we had been on our way... We didn't unload ANYTHING from the truck... Canon SLR camera, Flip video camera, computer, external drive, a half-dozen USB drives, iPod with several dozen audio books and about 6000 songs, my purse, The Mister's wallet... Everything except our clothes had been left in the truck... Stupid us.

The Mister's cell phone and all of our chargers had also gone, and by this time there was no power left on mine. The front desk clerk at the downtown Econo Lodge was very helpful. He loaned us a charger, and when the computer in the business center didn't work properly, even loaned us his laptop. After googling all of the numbers we needed, we began making all the calls to cancel the various credit cards that had been stolen.

The U.S. Bank customer service representative told us that there had been an unsuccessful cash advance attempt at around 9 pm the previous evening, and was even able to give us the address of the ATM. I called the police with that information, but was told that the report wouldn't be available until Monday, so I should call back then. Dissatisfied with the delay, when our daughter arrived from Lincoln, we made our way to the convenience store. The ATM vendor happened to be servicing the machine while we were there and was able to provide us with the exact time of the failed transaction, and we watched as the owner pulled up all the images on the store's surveillance cameras. While we didn't see any sign of the truck, we did get to see the miscreant attempt to use our stolen cards. A quick trip to Walgreens for a USB and we now have our own copies of the video as well, for what it's worth.

A trip to Verizon to replace the stolen cell phone, arrangements to borrow a vehicle to get home, and now we wait... Wait for the truck to be found, wait for the auto and home insurance to kick in, wait for life to get back to normal. The Mister still isn't speaking to me any more than necessary, and has vowed never to travel again (I did point out that several years ago my brother had his truck stolen from his front yard right in Sutherland, but that didn't make him feel any better).

Ah well, not all learning experiences are pleasant.

Thanks for stopping by. The coffee is always on.

ShareThis