Note: This is a long story about me losing something important and thinking it was something else entirely, as well as my first thought that it was a criminal gang involved. I blame all the true crime podcasts I have been listening to (Morbid especially – I love it so it is not a negative about the show, just that I am now thinking there is crime everywhere!) The story has a few swear words in it and I was rather annoyed and upset about the situation.
A while ago I took my little boy to the city for a day out. I drove into the city as the last time my little boy and I ventured out we took public transport everywhere, and this made him very tired. I thought why not make things easier by being able to just get in the car and drive home.
We had a good trip in and then I thought I was at the parking station that I had pre-paid for. I approached the car park and then soon realised that it was the wrong one due to the height of the garage, this was a place that my car cannot fit so I looked on Google and it appeared that the car park I needed was in fact around the corner.
I punched in the details into the GPS and then was on my way. I am sure that my GPS said that I had arrived at my destination and the car park was able to let me in for the height of my car and my credit card allowed me to enter (So I thought I was in the right place).
There was an office on the left, access to the car park was blocked off and two ladies approached me and said that it is valet parking and that they will park my car. I felt a little uncomfortable, but I do know with many car parks in Sydney that they have valet parking due to the difficult spaces available and to fit more cars in. My six-year-old and I got our things and got what we needed, handed the keys to the valet parker, and went on our city adventure.
As you might imagine my six-year-old was non-stop chatting to me and if that wasn’t happening, he was not listing to instructions and doing as he was told. I had to keep on negotiating and trying to listen to him and make sure we were on our way to our first stop in the city, lunch at Darling Harbour.
I don’t know about you but when you have a kid who is super excited and madly chatting, as well as all the other things in your head you are not fully concentrating on everything. Sad but true.
We managed to make it to our booking for lunch 15 minutes earlier, we sat down and relaxed, ordered dinner, and had some drinks waiting for our food. I did think that my little person would eat his cheese and vegemite pizza, but he had a few slices and then announced it tasted like pasta. Oh well, no more pizza for him. My burger was yummy and filled me up for the remainder of the day and as you will soon find out I wasn’t hungry for the rest of the day.
After our food, we went off to the Darling Harbour playground to burn off some energy and to fill in time until we could go to our other activity. We then made our way to Dymocks to see Grug for Book week. Once arriving at the bookshop, I realised we were early, we busied ourselves looking at the books and my little boy was convincing me to buy many things in the shop that we really don’t need.
Grug finally arrived and we met him, although I was the only one that got a picture with the famous star of his own books.
We left the bookshop and walked through the Strand Arcade, this is where my six-year-old decided he needed a necklace, as he saw some in a very expensive shop. He wasn’t understanding that purchasing these necklaces would mean spending thousands if not hundreds of dollars. To allow this suddenly necklace wanting child to get something that wouldn’t break the bank I took him to Paddy’s markets and he was thrilled at his new sparkly purchase.
My little boy was very tired by this stage, and I decided we should go to the car park, get the car and make our way home. I went to the address that I had on my email booking for my pre-paid parking.
We both arrived where I was sure I parked the car. The car was not there. The place was closed and in fact, looked a bit different, however, I was sure it was the place. It was the address on my ticket as I pre-paid for parking.
I asked a man where the people at the office were, and he said he didn’t know. I said I need to ask them where my car is, and he said just go and find it and then said some rude things and raced down the stairs.
By this stage, I was rather worried, concerned, and getting rather outraged that I couldn’t find the car. I went down to the bottom car park area and our car was nowhere in sight.
I then went to the building to see if I can ask someone about the car park and why it was empty and to find out where my car might be.
My six-year-old and I finally got to where the security guards were and explained what had happened. I told them that I was sure I parked my car there and that I was worried about the fact that it is not there. They asked me some more questions, I explained that my car was parked by the staff in the car park. They said they don’t do that in this car park.
Geez this now made me think that it was criminals stealing cars, two women told me to give my keys as they park the car. Now I was feeling very stupid, upset, and annoyed. Have I given keys to people to just take my car?
FUCK! Maybe there is a gang of car thieves doing this all over Sydney? Oh, why oh why has this happened? How am I going to get home with a little kid on the train late at night? And I was going to take the train but decided to drive! At this point, I was kicking myself for taking the car.
I walked around screaming and yelling and then started to cry! I realised that my car was not there and I had no idea where it was…. I have really stuffed up and I was very upset about it all.
The security guards checked the security footage and claimed that I am not on it at all. I was so upset that I thought this was part of the conspiracy but on the off chance it was true maybe I parked somewhere else, but where??????
In the area, I parked there was a Wilson’s Car Park on every corner, and some I cannot park in due to the height of my car. My little boy and I went to a few with the security guard and no car. I called the police and was waiting for over two hours. My little boy was tired, hungry, and really wanted to go home, and I was feeling the same as well as very upset with myself.
I had to leave as they were closing the building. I told them I had to take him to get something to eat.
While at Circular Quay McDonalds I got a call from a policeman about a few things about the car. I told him that my little boy was hungry and over it all. Told him what he needed to know and where we were. He said he was going to go to another car park and do a check elsewhere and then give us a callback. He called back and asked if we were still at McDonald’s, I said yes and then his colleague said that they would come and get us and take us to hopefully find our car.
We met the police officers outside Macca’s and explained a bit more about the whole situation. One officer said that we needed to get into their police car to go and find our car. Since the police showed up my super tired and annoyed child was now talking a million miles an hour, was super fascinated by the policemen, and was so happy to have a ride in a police car. Geez, I felt bad that we had involved the police and that I had no idea where my car was. I still thought that there was a criminal gang working the Wilson car parks, taking keys to say they will park the car and then racing off with it… Like Ferris Bueller but not returning the car.
In my head, it was an organised gang of thieves that target all the car parks and then sell off the cars to make huge profits. I am a huge fan of true crime and love listening to podcasts that detail murder, crime, and mysteries. I for one was thinking that this incident with my car might be a crime mystery…Yes, I did.. and this is a reason to maybe take a break from my true crime to relax. Clearly, it is not that relaxing.
So now we are both in the back of a police car off to another parking station to see if my car is there. It wasn’t. We then all went to the one I was sure I parked at and talked to a few people and then the police said what the security guards said, that I am not on the video surveillance footage. We did a few tests and then found out that we are on it from the time I was looking for my car but not when I came in the morning to park my car.
While at the parking station I answered some more questions while my little boy was fascinated by all the equipment that the police wear on their body for a days/nights work. After answering questions about the fact that the valet parking was near a hotel and some more, then the kind officer answered all my little boys’ questions. He was still going non-stop as he thought the officers were way cool!
One officer said that he had called Wilsons to get a person to come around and take us to other parking stations. With the info about the fact that the valet parkers said about the hotel, the officer asked the Wilson’s employee if there was a car park near a hotel. He said yes, so we decided to go to that one first to see if my car is there.
I really hoped it was, although I felt like a real idiot about the whole situation. However, while searching for my car at another car park one of the officers said someone else is having a really bad day at a Wilsons Car Park, I asked how? He then mentioned that this poor person had their foot run over by a car! I honestly cannot imagine how horrible this would be and the pain it would cause, I was thankful that our feet were intact and not run over by any vehicle! However, my car was still at large and I had no idea where it was.
We arrived at the Wilson’s Car Park near the hotel and it looked familiar. I handed my ticket to the people at the desk and they said to me that my car was there. It was now after 8pm and we started our journey to get my car around 2.30 or 3pm, so it had been hours.
The officers wanted to make sure that my car was indeed in the car park and joined us in the lift to go to the next level to see if it was really my car. We arrived on the level and just out of the door of the lift I could instantly see my car.
It was here. I found the car!
It wasn’t a criminal gang stealing cars? It wasn’t dodgy that the people at the other place didn’t have me on the CCTV, I wasn’t there at all and in fact at another place entirely!
Yes, I did a stupid thing and blanked on where I left my car.
I thanked everyone for their help and said how upset I feel that I wasted their time on a car. I know that police have bigger things to sort out than a woman who lost her car. I was pleased that I had the time for my parking for hours later than I needed so the time that I left the car park was all paid for as part of my parking. (I normally add extra hours to my booking in case I want to stay longer, not thinking about losing my car and taking hours to find it).
My little boy and I were so happy to have found the car. We both got in and drove home. We got home after 10pm and I finally was hungry by this stage and had a little something to eat. As you might imagine my six-year-old fell asleep on the way home and I tucked him into bed while I enjoyed some quiet time eating and watching an episode of one of my shows on Netflix.
Part of this story has shown I need to slow down and take time to make sure I notice things. However, it is hard when you have a million things going on in your brain, a kid going ten to the dozen and making sure that you are thinking of what you are doing next to not be late for events and things.
One of the girls’ friends’ mum had a horrible car accident that same weekend and she said that she needed to slow down and not think about everything too. It is so hard to slow down when you are the person that does many things for everyone. It is hard to just stop for a bit. I do think it is needed but with the chaotic world we live in, I believe that time out when you can think and have some silence (alone time) is essential.
I will now also try to not listen to 100% true crime in my alone time as I see conspiracies everywhere now.
What about you? Have you had moments when things have happened and if you just slowed down and had the chance to take more time at that moment the incident wouldn’t have happened?