Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Lost Phone

My son is sad.

What was supposed to be a school fun day at the Hermon turned out to be a crushing disaster for him. Thankfully, he wasn't hurt in any way, but what started out as wonderfully fantastic day of fun, ended in gloom and tears. See, as part of his newfound maturity of attending a dorm yeshiva, he received a cellphone of his own. We limit the calls he can make per month, but as things go here in Israel, it's always best for kids who are away from home to have a phone so we can reach him or for him to call us.

He called at 11 to say what a great time he was having, playing in the snow, seeing the snow-capped Hermon in all it's glory (saying the bracha of "Oseh Maaseh Breisheet" upon seeing it), and I told him, "Have fun, enjoy yourself"

Later on during the day, the ominous SMS message arrived from my wife, "He lost his phone." Obviously, it's only money, and not health, so things are kept in proportion...but I knew my son was hysterically trying to find his phone, and he recruited all his friends to scour the mountain to find the mobilephone in the snowstack.

To everyone's dismay, the phone was in "vibrate" mode, so no one could hear it ringing, as we called it dozens of time in the hope someone would find it. My son tearfully got on the bus on his way back to school, leaving behind his beloved cellphone. In return for his excellent grades and positive attitude at school, we paid extra to get him a "nicer" phone...and since he waited so long to get it, the sadness for him was amplified.

Putting myself in his shoes, I thought back to things I had lost as a kid. A baseball glove, my brand new 10 speed bike was stolen, and in first grade I lost my water-squirt ring that fit in my hand. Of course it's silly, but the pain of losing something when you're younger is still...a reason for sadness.

I envision the phone in the snow.

It's battery is slowly dying and won't be found till the spring (if ever). The next time it snows it will be completely buried. Ive already disabled outgoing calls to it, and it won't receive any more calls as of today. It could be years before it's ever found...and even if it is, will someone try to find a way to charge it, and see my son's MP3 collection on it, or the pictures he took?

The good news, is that we have insurance on the phone, and should have a new one for him in a week or so. He didn't know that at the time...though I doubt it would have cheered him up that much. Being given the responsibility of a owning cellphone meant he's accountable...and as he said, "this hurts me more than you."

I guess human nature is to care about physical possessions.

And even though health is the #1 priority, it still hurts when things get lost, stolen, or broken.

Hmmm. That was a rather melancholic posting. You ever get sad over losing something?

Wherever I am, my blog turns towards Eretz Yisrael


YMedad said...

I "lost" mine once. I was pickpocketed on the #14 bus and didn't even feel a thing until I got off.

Anonymous said...

My condolences...

Anonymous said...

There's nothing inherently wrong with caring about physical possessions, especially when someone else paid for them! Keeping it in proper perspective is what counts.

Sarah Likes Green said...

awww shame.. hope it turns up. but snow/water in cellphones isn't good for them. i figured that out the hard way :P

i recently lost a necklace that my grandparents gave me for my bat mitzvah. it wasn't the most expensive one or special but i liked it and i wore it all the time and it had sentimental value. i have no idea where it is and my grandmother said it's not a big deal, just get a new one but i was still upset and we searched everywhere but to no avail.

Anonymous said...

I had this wonderful stuffed monkey puppet (you know, the kind with the long arms and velcro on the hands so that you can wrap them around you while using the puppet) named Sherman that had been a gift from a friend in college. Sherman survived college, moving to Israel, moving around Israel, etc. My son loved him, so I brought him with us on a trip to Eilat a few years ago. A few days after returning home, I realized (after a frantic search), that I must have left Sherman in the domestic flights terminal at Ben Gurion Airport (got to love those company trips!). I was crushed!

Jack Steiner said...

I know what you mean.

Anonymous said...

I've lost a cellphone as well (well, had it stolen). Even worse, it was when I was working for a summer camp, during an overnight out-of-state trip.

It sounds like your son is handling it really maturely - taking blame and recognizing that he should have been more careful.

Anonymous said...

I also had a necklace - a simple gold magen david - that my savta had given me for my bat mitzva stolen from my dorm room. I was so upset and angry at the stupid person who had taken something that was of so little value to anyone else but me.

My son fell in love with a little ceramic bear he found in my mom's house when he was about a year old. I knew it had to happen. The day when it fell on the hard kitchen tile and broke to pieces...He was truly heart-broken. I just imagined the pain his little one-year-old heart must have felt. He cried so bitterly. I collected the pieces and put it in a little bag which he held on to for a little while before moving on. It sounds ridiculous but it was really tough for him.

Anonymous said...

On one of my exciting trips to Israel, my suitcase was very neatly sliced into at the exact spot where i placed a piece of equipment. How did they know the exact spot? Couldn't get any satisfaction from ELAL or the airport! That was a nice "Welcome to Israel".

But didn't Yaakov Avinu go back for his pachim ketanim!?
It says that tzadekim care about all their possessions, even the little ones (cell phones).

A note: beside calling the number to find a lost phone, i think they will be coming out with 'honing devices' so you can track the phone (while in the possession of its owner) - which is good for parents and children. I heard about it recently.

Lion of Zion said...

my comment here turned into a post on cell phone tzedakah in teaneck:

Michael said...

I'm sorry for your son... I'm sure that he'll be extra careful with the next one...

When we moved here, I left a neat collection of "old sheqelim" at the house in Michigan...

...and I still don't know where all my CDs are.

My 4 yr old lost a bracelet last month, and she still feels sad about it.

Anonymous said...

losing friends.

Search the Muqata


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