The Cell Phone Samaritan

I was immersed in work one night at Starbucks when I heard a loud, raspy voice call out, “Excuse me, you dropped your phone!”

Instinctively, I looked to the floor for my pink case before I heard a woman say “thanks!” She reached under the table and picked up her iPhone. The man seemed to appreciate her appreciation and started chatting with her.

“Just today this guy dropped his phone outside. I called a number and got through to someone,” he said to the woman and the young man she was with, tone friendly as if they’d spoken before. “A $400 phone, and no thank you, nothing. I waited for an hour outside Rockefeller Center, too. Unbelievable.”

His anger became other customers’ anger, and soon four or five people in the store shook their heads in unison. It was the first time I’d seen everyone in Starbucks engaged in the same conversation.

“Next time it happens, I’ll throw the phone in the garbage can. I’ll throw it out!” The man was standing now.

“Do it!” cheered the young man with the woman who had dropped her phone. The woman smiled, offering her approval. Even the baristas momentarily abandoned their shop-closing duties to listen to what was going on.

Finally the man sat down, pleased with his good deed for the day.

I can only hope what goes around comes around for this Cell Phone Samaritan—even in a city where phones seem to evaporate the second they’re left alone.

Cover photo: “OR” by Thomas Leuthard/ http://thomas.leuthard.photography/