Sunday, 22 October 2017

Organizing Chaos - Wallet

A wallet is the most important and valuable item which we carry around with us. Regardless of our gender, we all carry a wallet with us where ever we go which is why it is pretty common for it to be lost or stolen. Most of us have misplaced it at least once in our lives. 




I lost mine at a store in Westfield shopping center, London when I put my wallet at the till for 3 seconds as I turned to get my mobile out of my bag. When I turned back, my wallet wasn’t there. In confusion, I took a minute or two to move out of the queue and double check my bag if I had put it in there. Then I spoke to the cashier and insisted on checking CCTV recording. We saw a strange green eyed man who was standing right next to me in the queue. The moment I turned my face from my wallet, he extended his arm confidently, grabbed my wallet and without anyone realizing it, walked out of the store. Unfortunately I had cash, expensive gift cards and my Debit cards. The first thing I did was to call up my banks to block the Debit cards and then I reported the matter to the Police. There is almost no chance of the Police finding anyone’s lost wallet (even in the UK) as they are busy handling the bigger crimes in this world these days.

I also lost my wallet in Saeed Book bank store in Islamabad. I never found it after I paid at the till. I realized it was missing when I reached my car. So I looked everywhere in between but never found it.


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This makes our wallets more vulnerable. The trick is to only to keep only your most recent bank card, minimum amount of cash, a laminated color copy of your NIC and Driving license in the wallet. I never carry original IDs in my wallet. You may also keep a few extra black and white copies of your ID as they may be needed anytime. Always make sure your wallet has a proper place to put coins. I think wallets with no coin space are useless. Carrying a separate coin case is a good idea in such cases. Carrying change is always necessary where ever you live.

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My wallet with coin pocket at the back and an extra coin case

In any country, an ATM machine will always require you to enter your personal 4 digit PIN Code before you can withdraw any money. In the UK, this code is always required to be entered at retail stores as well, whenever you purchase any item. That makes using Debit cards very secure as no one else knows your personal code. I was honestly shocked to know that in Pakistan, none of the stores ask for your PIN when you shop. They only ask for your signature, which one can easily copy from the card and it’s not even verified. 



So if anyone steals your wallet, he can quickly go to the nearest store and shop with your card until the time you have gotten your Debit card fully blocked. Because of this, people living in Pakistan have to be double vigilant and always have their 24 hour bank helpline number and your details handy as you may need it any moment. My mom once lost her wallet and realized it a bit later that it was missing. As soon as she realized it, she instantly called up her bank to get it blocked but unfortunately the thief had already done shopping worth Rs. 20,000 using her card. The sooner you ask for it to be blocked, more chances that you will save yourself a burglary.


A lot of shops are giving us their cards, convincing us that we’ll get discounts if we have enough points. But most of the time they are pretty unnecessary. I carried Tesco grocery store card for four years but never actually benefited from it in any way as the vouchers would expire before I got the time to take them to the store. Also the procedure to use the vouchers wasn’t suited for anyone with a busy life. Literally the bananas would get a separate discount when presented with the banana voucher. And veggies had their own vouchers. For a workaholic like me, those vouchers only looked good in the bin. On my SUBcard, I got one miserable looking free sub after about 8 months of gathering points.  So I try to avoid these marketing gimmicks now. The only store card that I actually wanted to get was SuperDrug. My only thrill with that was that its card has a mirror on one side. A girl can’t go wrong with a free mirror card after all. 
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Arranged cash in my granny Rosemary’s wallet

I think each of us are organized in one way or the other. Like I never really cared about organizing the cash in my wallet. To be honest I hardly carry any cash anyway. I have believed in plastic money for as long as I can remember. But lately I got to see my grandmother Rosemary’s wallet and I was truly inspired. She keeps all her notes in one direction and they are always in ascending order. It reminded me of the time I had to Cash-Out all the tills at closing every night when I was supervisor cashier in London. This way it takes seconds to take out the cash you need and I’m sure our eyes would thank us for the pleasure also.

2 comments:

  1. I also love organizing my wallet and purse. Thanks

    ReplyDelete