And you'll never be alone again, Mathilda*
I thought I lost Mathilda. I looked for her Saturday morning and she wasn't in her usual spot in my purse. I searched the house and the car, frantic, panicky and close to calling 911.
"Hello? I'd like to report a missing iPod."
"EMERGENCY! EMERGENCY! AMBER ALERT! MISSING IPOD IN THE FIRST PRECINCT!"
Yea, so not everyone would respond to my dire emergency with the thought that it's a, well, dire emergency.
It's not just the value of the iPod. It's not the accumulated 10.16 GB of songs. It's...it's..the attachment. Yes, the attachment. I've come to think of Mathilda as a member of the family. A child, even.
So imagine my panic when I saw she was gone. It was the same spinning, floor dropping, shaken world effect I had when I once lost my daughter in the mall when she was three. And I lost her for less than a minute. This was going on hours of emptying drawers, cleaning out the glove compartment, retracing my steps, fighting back tears and using telepathy.
I barely slept Saturday night. I slogged through Sunday on autopilot. I missed her company. Her shine. Her winking "do not disconnect" message.
And all the while I was pretty sure that I had committed the unfathomable sin of leaving her at work. Vulnerable to thieves and greasy fingers and prying eyes. Out in the open where any cleaning person or maintenance person could come in and click her wheel or push her buttons. Oh, the violation! I had nightmares about her being used by someone else, maybe slipped into a strangers pocket and he would take her home, strip her of all her contents and fill her up with his own brand of musical entertainment. I couldn't let myself think about it any longer. We had company over on Sunday and then went to a movie just to take my mind off it.
I opened my office door with trepidation this morning. I slowly turned the key, dreading what I would - or wouldn't - find on the other side of the door. I didn't turn the lights on at first. The soft glow of my computer screen was the only light in the room. My eyes followed that glow and I got up the nerve to glance downward from the screen. There, in the faint light, I could make out the circuitous white loop of Mathilda's wire. And connected to the end of that wire was Mathilda herself, her screen gently reminding me that her battery was fully charged. I let out a deep, relieved breath. I held Mathilda in my hands..no, cradled her and restarted the computer.
She's been entertaining me all day, albeit with a streak of anger showing through here or there. I imagine she's not happy with being left alone all weekend. I can tell by her the playlist selections she's making today.
I'm sorry, Mathilda. I'll never let you out of my sight again. Now please, stop with the House of Pain.
*bonus points for recognizing the quote and, subsequently, where mathilda's name comes from