Yesterday, I turned 30.
On Saturday, while I was shopping for plants with my girlfriends, someone smashed the window in my Prius and stole my purse.
What was lost? Well, my purse, of course. It was a fabulous bag that I had been sent to review, and I loved it. My wallet, all of my credit cards, license, Kindle, iPhone…..all gone. The gift I had been knitting for my best friend? Gone. Most heartbreaking, the necklace I wore to my wedding was also in there.
I’m trying to be positive: no one was hurt, it’s all just stuff, and two of my best friends were with me. And my computer wasn’t in there. Had this happened on Friday, it would have been. That would have been close to catastrophic. I could have been traveling, but at least I was home. My two friends stayed with me for two hours while we waited for the police, and let me use their phones to call the credit card companies and other various places. Yes, it was a huge hassle. But it could have been way worse.
Here is what I will be doing differently in the future, in case anything like this happens again.
- Only keeping essential cards with me. I had 7, yes 7 credit cards in that purse. Between my bank accounts, my personal cards, and my corporate and travel cards, it all adds up. In the future I will have my debit cards and one credit card. Period. It will be hard to remember that I have to pack my corporate card for every trip, but all the non essential cards need to stay at home.
- Making a list of all credit card numbers and phone numbers. Yes, they always say to do this, but I know nobody who actually does. I will be doing it in the future! Even though I had cards through only two companies (Wells Fargo and Citi), I had to call five separate numbers because my cards were in different departments. And since my cards were gone, it was a struggle to find some of those numbers.
- Making a copy of my drivers license. Again, we all know we are supposed to do this. But who does?
- Never leaving jewelry in my purse again. After my last facial, I got lazy and didn’t put my necklace back on. I regret that so much now.
- I also will never leave my purse in my car again. Stupid, stupid, stupid.
A few things I did right:
- I did NOT have my social security card in my wallet.
- I did NOT have any keys in my purse. My house keys and car keys are on the same chain, which I had in my pocket.
- There was no cash in my wallet. It was all in my pocket.
One of the most frustrating things about this experience has been dealing with Citi. I have four credit cards with them: two personal ones, a small business one, and my corporate card. I called and spoke to someone in the personal division and explained all of the different cards I have. He assured me that all four cards had been canceled. Well, Sunday I got a call from the corporate card division asking me about suspicious charges. The thieves managed to get $800 spent before Citi thought to call me. Obviously that card was not shut down. This concerned me, so when I got home I found the number for the small business group and called them. Sure enough, that card also was not shut down and the thieves managed to spend $1700 on it. This amazes me, and also infuriates me. I am not liable for any of these charges, thank goodness, but if the original guy I spoke to had told me I had to call other departments, it would have saved them $2500. Expensive mistake.
All in all, it will cost me about $1500 to replace what was stolen, and the thieves got an additional $3500 across all of my credit cards. I have certainly learned my lesson about leaving things in my car. Even when you feel safe, are surrounded by friends, and at a community event, people are watching and won’t hesitate to take your stuff. I feel violated, angry, sad for the memories that are lost, and mad that I spent so much of my birthday weekend dealing with this crap.
But Saturday night, forty of my friends and family joined at my house to celebrate my birthday. I had an amazing party, with fun and laughter lasting long into the night. My husband sneaked out of the house and bought me a new necklace to replace the one that was stolen. So really? I’m very lucky, and I had a great birthday. But I will never, ever leave my purse in the car again.