You Need To Get The Money Now!
It was 1997. I was working at a Fortune 500 company as a web developer/computer programmer. I was almost 1 ½ years in. There were 4 people who resided in the section where I worked. My boss did computer programming. There was another guy who also was a web developer. Then there was a computer technician who worked out all the problems with the computers.
The computer technician K and I found out that we both liked watching NASCAR races. Each week, after the races on Sunday, we would get together on Monday in the morning and talk about what happened in the race. His driver was the late Dale Earnhardt Sr. and mine was the now retired Jeff Gordon. We would go back and forth discussing what we thought. We would have different ways to explain what happened. Basically, he had his side and I had mine. If you know anything about racing, you know that Dale Earnhardt would always wreck people to win. Of course, K would always come to his defense.
The company needed someone to be the backup for K when he was on vacation or sick. I volunteered to do that. I had experience with installing hardware and software, in addition to building computers and fixing certain hardware and software problems. So I started to shadow him on occasion, while still doing the work I was supposed to be doing. We would go to different buildings and work on problems for people.
We became closer as friends as time moved on. We did things together like playing golf and playing online video games.
June 1997 comes and we are only a few weeks away from the Pepsi 400 at Daytona International Speedway. He came to me and told me that one of the people that we worked with had tickets to the race. He wanted me to go. The tickets were pricey and I wasn’t sure if I really wanted to go. I told him no. Then he went around to all the other people he could including his best friend. None of them wanted to go with him. So then he came back to me and was practically begging me to go. I told him that I wanted to think about it. Plus he wanted to check with someone else in the morning.
The next morning, he checked with that person and they had told him no. He came over to my desk and pleaded with me to go. I finally said yes. But he wanted me to go get the money right now. I told him I needed to wait until lunch. He told me no, you need to get the money now. He told me that the woman might sell them to someone else if I waited.
At 10 am, I walked out of my office door, around the corner and down the hall. The door opened to the outside. There was a roof along the whole way so you wouldn’t get rained on, if it was raining. I walked down the long hallway outside to the turnstile. The only way out and in was through that turnstile. You pushed a button to exit. To get back in, you had to swipe your badge. I went to the parking lot and got in the car.
I was heading to the local branch of my bank. It was located a few miles south. Three stoplights later, I was on the main road traveling to the bank. The bank was located in a shopping mall, in its own stand-alone building. The shopping mall was just across the railroad tracks and to the north of the road. I drove over the railroad tracks and turned on my blinker to enter the parking lot.
As I looked over there, I couldn’t believe what I saw. The bank was gone! And I don’t mean it was closed. It was gone, gone. The whole building was leveled. There was nothing left. There was just a slab of concrete where it had been.
I thought to myself, “Great! Now what am I going to do?” I drove back to the office. As I made my way back, I thought what a mess. Here I was driving around to an imaginary bank while I should be doing my work. I hadn’t even told my boss that I was leaving because I thought I could just make a quick drive over there and be done with it.
So I popped into K’s office and told him what had happened. I told him he’d have to wait for the money until I could get it at lunch. He wasn’t happy.
11:30 came and I left again. This time, I had to travel about 10 miles to get to another branch of the bank. This one I knew was still open. It was located in a tall building. I hit the drive-thru and got the money. I hurried back and met with K. I gave him the money. He dashed out of the office to the woman’s building. He came back a happy camper with the tickets.
This was probably one time when social media, had it been around, would have come in handy.
Until next time, happy reading.
Have you ever driven somewhere and found the store or building gone? If yes, tell us your story.
Yeah, back then we didn't have very many banking options. At least convenient ones. So, how was the race?? :)