Man outside, car keys inside

Sam called for help today; he’d locked his keys in his car after arriving at his workplace from his computer class at North Central Texas College.

I hopped in the pickup and headed across town from my workplace to his, calling him when I was at the light out front of Albertsons. He told me he was in front of China Garden buffet.

He never said anything about getting something to eat, so I didn’t know why he would be hanging out in the foyer of the restaurant. When I pulled up, he didn’t come outside. In fact, he went further in.

I went in to the restaurant to get him, and he was surrounded by three employees at the restaurant. I didn’t like the looks of it at all. I asked him to step out into the foyer with me so we could avoid a scene.

He asked me to go unlock his car, and I told him I didn’t know where it was, please walk with me. We were about halfway up the parking lot when he told me he was in the middle of lunch and he hadn’t paid for his meal yet.

We turned back around to see an employee step out and toward us. I quickly explained the confusion, and we paid the ticket right then — plus tip, even though the place was a buffet.

By this point, way too many things had happened out of order for Sam to catch up. But he was holding his cool pretty well.

We turned back around towards the car again, and got his keys out. Then he said he wanted to go back and finish his lunch.

I offered to go back and help him try to get back into the buffet, but the servers were ready.

“We saved his table for him,” one said.

Sam and I tried to debrief the situation, since our miscommunications made it worse at first. We didn’t talk about the elephant in the room, though.

How would you have solved this problem if I wasn’t 15 minutes away with the spare key?

I plan on asking him that question soon. We’ll see what he says.

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