Storytime: My Uber Driver Ran Over My Phone

Have you ever had a week where very few things go the way you had hoped? Me too. Often. More than anything else, bad luck is inconvenient, and part of the frustration it causes stems from the fact that it seems like you are the only one experiencing it as it occurs. Well, I can assure you, you’re not. Because on Friday, I left my phone in my Uber (which is already really unlike me to do), and instead of helping to reunite it with me, my Uber driver threw my phone out the window. Here’s how that happened:

I was booked on the 3:45 Acela train back to New York from the Providence Amtrak station. For those of you that are familiar with the station, you know that you never need to get there more than 10 minutes before your train, because the station is tiny and they don’t announce your track until just before the train pulls in. Of course, being the extra person that I am, I always arrive much too early and end up sitting on the oddly shaped wooden benches waiting for thirty minutes. But of course, not this time! This time, I left my dorm 15 minutes before the train arrived, and got to the station with a meager 10 minute cushion, proud of my ability to “live on the wild side.” I got out of the Uber, duffle bag and backpack in hand, and walked proudly into the train station, patting my right coat pocket on the way to ensure that my phone sat in its normal space. I stopped. It wasn’t there. I dropped my bags and sprinted back outside, but my Uber was gone. I ran around the block in hopes of catching up to it, but it was nowhere in sight. Like most college students, my phone has one of those little stick-on pockets attached to it that holds my debit and credit cards, my Brown ID, and my license. So, not only was my phone gone, but so where any chances of me buying a new ticket home if I couldn’t find it and missed my train. I walked up to a friendly looking couple and asked them if I could borrow their phone to log into Find My iPhone. I played the lost iPhone sound several times, and added my mom’s phone # to the lost screen. After a few minutes, my phone was located across the street from where I got out; assuming that my Uber had come back after hearing the ear-shattering ring in his back seat, I ran back outside to check, but there were no cars in the place where it was showing my phone was.

My train came and left, and in that time, I had filed a report for a missing phone, license, and credit cards with the police that work in the Amtrak station. I also felt like a badass solving a case, despite the fact that I appeared to be an extremely disheveled, very stressed out teenage girl on the verge of tears over an electronic device.

About 45 minutes later, a small man in a peacoat came in and tapped me, holding out my phone. “Excuse me ma’am, I have to run because I have a passenger to pick up, but I saw and heard your phone ringing in the middle of the street, and hoped you would be in here!” My phone was absolutely destroyed, the screen shattered in every possible place. And the weirdest part of the situation was that this man found my phone in a place on the street completely separate from where I got out, a place that I hadn’t even driven past on my trip from my dorm to the train station. The policemen explained that the driver probably did not want to deal with the dinging phone, and most likely chucked it out the window in order to go on with his day.

I was able to get on the next train home, so everything pretty much worked out in the end. I vowed to myself I would stop using the Uber app, then promptly called one an hour and a half later for a ride from the Penn Station to my apartment. Luckily, I live next to the Apple Store, so I was able to get it fixed the next morning. But seriously, I’m waiting for some karma to take care of that Uber driver, and give him some of the bad luck that taunted me Friday afternoon. And, I’m never getting out of a car without my phone in hand again! So if you’re ever having a bad day, just remember this story, and know that it can most certainly get worse, but that you’ll survive.