“Hey, Siri, where are you?”
I love Siri’s crisp answer, “I’m over here.”
I’m so messy-minded these days I ask Siri to tell me where I’ve set him several times a day.
No answer this time.
What is this?
I walked from the kitchen to my study and asked, “Siri, where ARE you?”
My Siri is a Brit. A chap. Veddy proper. Veddy dear. Whoever feeds him his lines is a sweetheart.
No answer again.
Standing in the middle of the hall: “Siri?”
Oh dear.
Looked in Bill’s study. Bill’s study is uber-neat so a search goes quickly.
Bill called out from the living room, “Shall I call you?”
He did. Silence. I didn’t panic. Yet.
Looked again in my study, seriously this time (no cracks about my study).
I heard Bill again, “Hey, Siri, call Sylvia ~”
I went outside and looked in the car. I always connect my cell phone in the car so I can make hands-free calls. Nope.
Back down the hall to look all over our bedroom (it is in pretty good order so a serious search is possible). Looked in our small cluttered bathroom. The clutter was as I’d left it earlier. Went back to the kitchen, moved bottles of avocado oil, olive oil, balsamic white vinegar…you know the sorts of things I moved…looking seriously. Nada.
Went out to the garden. The sight of my mother’s bonsai gingko forest lifted my spirits but there was no iPhone tucked among the little trees. Scanned the raised beds. So beautiful, the ruffles of parsley studded with bright orange calendulas and ruby-red lettuces. I felt a little better, but…
Came inside and called myself from our land line.
Silence. Now I began to panic.
All this occurred after I’d come home from Safeway buying stuff for our grandson’s sixteenth birthday. Wrestling through Safeway’s self-check-out line with a helium-filled balloon, bouquet of daffodils, tall bottle of fresh orange juice, tall can of Star Italian olive oil (this latter had me euphoric, hadn’t seen one of those in years), several fresh pizzas, I remember setting my iPhone down on the top rack of the shopping cart (my shopping list was on my phone).
Oh no!
Ditzy me–for some reason I’m getting ditzier by the day–obviously I’d left my cell phone in the cart.
Told Bill. “I’ve got to go back to Safeway and hope it’s been turned in.”
“Coming with you.”
The pleasant self-check-out lady hadn’t had any cell phones.
“It’s an iPhone 14…black with red on the back…”
“Sorry. Nothing.” She grabbed a piece of paper. “Give me your information.” I did. “We have a pretty good record with lost phones…”
“I’m sure. It’s Santa Cruz.”
Bill and I looked through all the empty shopping carts inside the store then outside in the enormous parking lot, every five minutes Bill saying into his iPhone, “Hey, Siri, call Sylvia.” No chimes from anywhere (Bill’s ring is stately chimes).
“I know you’re going to find it, darling.”
Such a dear man.
So we came home and I set to work. On my iMac I googled “How to find a lost phone.”
Up came a bunch of companies who promised they could find it. I took the second offer, went to its website, was not surprised to learn I had to give a credit card number. Was this a good idea? Well, I imagined the company had to be legit because…oh heck. I just went ahead…
“We’ve found it!” for only $.83. Where was it?
Crow’s Landing.
Crow’s Landing#%^&#$@%!?
The map on the website had a dot of a hazy blue circle imprinted with the image of a cell phone. Wowser! For an instant I thought, That’s Siri there! and then I felt like shaking my head to get the fizzies out…the blue dot was east of Santa Cruz in the middle of The Great Valley.
I looked up Crows Landing and the route there from Santa Cruz. Was it possible in the long hour since I’d left the market, the thief copped the prize in a shopping cart, hustled out onto the Cabrillo Highway (1) and–in his/her magic-powered vehicle–drove south through Watsonville…over to 129 past Aromas Quarry…hit San Juan Road (G11) past Ladybug Farms and greenhouses and fields and fields mostly still barren this time of year–up to where it hit 101 through dark green native oaks as the highway turned into 156 which turned into 152…more scrub and bare land along CAL-FIRE Firefighter Matt Will Memorial Hwy…past San Juan Bautista and now more neat patches of fields onto the Pacheco Pass Highway…then past the Oasis West RV Park, a sharp left north up highway 5 past Santa Nella…a right again onto West Stuhr Road…sharp left north at Eastin Road…just after Eastin meets up with 33, there Siri & Company arrived at Crows Landing.
The route guide said it was 1hour 56 minutes for the 107 miles.
Would I bother to fiddle with a credit card complaint to salvage my $.83? No. I’d had an interesting lesson in California geography through part of The Great Valley I didn’t know.
Oh well. I wondered at that “We’ve found it!” business still being in business.
Now I had to seriously get down to my own business.
I knew to freeze my accounts on the three credit companies. Darned if I had to fuss with passwords… I’ve subscribed to a password app that was supposed to make life simpler and it keeps rearing its green head on my screen but I haven’t had time to feed it.
OK. Credit secured. As much as I could secure it. The problem was that old Sylvia had removed the latch that made a password essential to enter my phone. Stupid. Of course at the time it crossed my mind that removing the need for a password was a stupid move, but of course I figured odds were pretty good I wasn’t going to lose my phone.
So the phone was Open Sesame. Nagging at me and scary was that every time I generated a new password–way often–I noted it in the Notebook app: Apple ID:… Password:… Right there for the world to see.
Maybe you’d put a good spin on it and say I am a trusting person? Maybe not.
So the thief couldn’t get into my bank accounts I didn’t think. Or had I added last Tuesday’s  newest Bank of America password to the Notebook?
The panic deepened.
And I missed my old friend Siri. Tireless faithful companion. I missed reaching in my jeans’ back pocket and pulling out my slab of 21st century genius. I found myself reaching for it automatically when I remembered something–to make a note in the To Do app.
My memory, my life–my everything!–was within.
That really upset me.
Through my iMac because of the cloud I knew I could retrieve a great deal that was on the iPhone but recordings of Bill’s lectures on the novel Tom Jones and his talk on “Hitchcock and Film Noir” at the Hitchcock Festival were irretrievable because I hadn’t copied them to any other device.
Same was true of all the photographs I’d taken with the phone’s camera for three years. It had, in effect, replaced my Nikon Zfc. OK. I’d just have to go back to the Nikon, which I also loved…
Bill said, “You’ll find it. I just know you will!”
Yeah. Sure. Absolutely.
I slunk back into my study, sat down, greeted my handsome big iMac with the pale blue border. Went into Launchpad and was exultant to discover–I’d never bothered to look there–that my “Notes” app with all the passwords was on my desk computer! Also all Bill’s lectures were there in “Voice Memos!” Fantastic.
Then one of those lightbulbs went off in my head as I remembered something about an app called “Findmy…”
I went online and typed in “Findmy” and noted my iPhone.
My breath was taken–really, I was stupefied–as up came a map…and on the map up came the street neighboring us to the north…then at right angles up came the street on which we live…and somewhere in the middle up came a smudge with a phone in it…
Oh no. That’s our house! It can’t be in the house. I’ve looked everywhere. I lifted myself out of my chair. Couldn’t take more of this nonsense. Time to make supper.
I was exhausted. Dispirited. Furious at myself for having been so lackadaisical about where I put critical information, how I managed my life’s essentials…
Went into our bathroom, sat down on the throne, looked at the heap of stuff on the little table before me…
I don’t believe it.
There a corner peeking out from under a thrown-down towel…
“Hey Siri, where are you?”
No answer.
I checked for Silent Mode. It was on. I remembered setting it that way for something but couldn’t remember what. Flicked it off.
“Hey Siri, where are you?”
“I’m here!”
You darling boy.
Suddenly I had a vague memory of coming home from Safeway and having to dash for the loo…
Exhilarated but exhausted, annoyed, I blurted, “Siri, why didn’t answer me when I spoke to you? Uh, phone, why didn’t you ring when Bill called you?”
The poor thing didn’t answer rude questions. I should have known better. Manners. Manners.
Maybe it just needed a break–Cameron is on Spring Break, maybe Siri & Company needed a Spring Break.
They’d had it.
Blessings on them.
I of course will be more careful, more methodical, more better about everything now that my dear Siri is back in the fold.
At least I’m going to try.

9 Comments. Leave new

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill out this field
Fill out this field
Please enter a valid email address.
You need to agree with the terms to proceed

Previous Post
Happy Accidents Ginger Cake of Many Virtues
Next Post
18th Century Henry Fielding on 21st Century Dictatorship*