The first time I lost Logan, he was two and we had gone to Wiksteed Park in England. The employees acted quickly and were able to procure him for me toot sweet. Then Dan and I lost him when he was four while we were in Cambridge. The mall employees were ready to call the police just as he came ambling casually back to his highly distraught mother. Most recently, we misplaced Logan while in York. We had been visiting the train museum last summer when he he wandered off. He was not quite six years old. By this time, I was able to give a VERY detailed description of my son to the bored employee. "Blue eyes, small cut on his upper lip, short brown hair, jeans, Iron Man shoes, orange shirt with a blue stripe across the chest." I had taken to memorizing what he was wearing each day for just this type of occasion. Again he was found before having to involve the local authorities. Not so, today.
They were supposed to take the school bus for the first time to where I'm teaching. I was told to expect the bus at 4:30. I was outside at the appointed hour. At 4:45, I went inside the school to call the bus people for an ETA on the kids' bus. Imagine my freak-out factor when I was told they had been dropped off 20-25 minutes ago and the bus driver said he last saw them "walking across a field." I explained, in a rather shrill manner I'm afraid, that we don't LIVE around this school, they've never BEEN to this area before and WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO DO NOW!?!!! He suggested that he should probably call the police. I concurred most emphatically, giving a VERY detailed description of what the kids were wearing and told him to tell the police they could find me searching for the kids outside the school property. I hurried out and started calling for Hannah with a sense of hopelessness. They were wandering around a strange neighborhood, not knowing where to go. Worried. Crying. Lost! I rounded the corner of the school and had an epiphany. "Check the playground." Crazy, but I was annoyed to find them there. I guess I was mostly annoyed that I had worried for no good reason. And because now the police were involved. I had to find a custodian to let me back in the building so I could call Transportation and tell them the children were found and to notify the police all was well.
I got the kids in the car, and asked them to show me where the bus drops them off so I would be there to meet them next time. As I drove past the front of the school again, I noticed two police cars slowly cruising the parking lot. I stopped the car and did the walk of shame towards the police officer on foot. Confessing the situation to him as he walked me back to my car, Officer Wilkinson peered into the backseat of the car before he wished me a good evening (probably to make sure I hadn't maimed the children for having worried me).
About five or six blocks from the school, we met a fire truck headed in the direction from which we had just come. You have to admit, when we finally do it up, we don't spare the drama.