Lesson #5: Don’t lose your debit card and then go to the biggest mall on the East Coast

Man with empty pockets
Don’t be this guy…

There’s nothing worse than being a 23-year-old girl (I say “girl,” ’cause I’m not ready to call myself a woman) with empty pockts in a mall. 64 needles to the eye? Nope, not as bad as aimlessly wandering through a shopping district completely broke. It’s really just masochistic.

But alas…. I am a masochistic creature, which I why I found myself at Tyson’s Corner, PRACTICALLY THE BIGGEST MALL EVER, without my debit card on Sunday. Of course, this wasn’t on purpose. I had lost my debit card the day before and didn’t realize until later…until I stood in front of the register at Forever 21, stale-faced and confused when I couldn’t locate my card. Luckily, I had SOME cash in my purse, which I emptied onto the counter and used to pay for my new burgundy sweater dress.

Six bucks left.

Of course, I didn’t come mall-traversing alone. I was with one of my best friends. Her name is Hannah. As we continued through the mall, I worried aloud over where my card might be, but Hannah assured me that, until I found it, she’d spot me, which I thought was very kind. Still, my Pride was not a happy camper. Or, rather, shopper. I captitalize the word “pride,” because my Pride has made it perfectly clear that it will stand nothing less than upper, and that includes case. And class. But not to be confused with the drug.

I figured I’d just try not to buy anything for the rest of the day, because, as nice as Hannah’s offer was and though I would promise to pay her back, I still felt weird about taking someone else’s money. Charity Schmarity.

And then we walked into the next clothing store, and all bets were off. I ended up grabbing a few things, and piling them into Hannah’s arms. “I’ll take these. I couldn’t help it. Thanks Mom. I’ll pay you back.”

Next store…same thing. And then we got ice cream, which I didn’t pay for. Did I mention I didn’t pay for lunch either? OH! Or dinner, because we stopped for subs on our way home.

All of this to say… if you’re at the mall and you realize you don’t have your debit card or any money for that matter, GET THE HELL OUT OF THERE. Because as many times as you tell yourself you won’t spend your friend’s money, you will. You will spend your friend’s money, and it will feel gooood. You feel happy about it. That is, until you’re writing out a check a day later for $150. Only then will you regret your poor decision. But at least you had fun, and at least sharing finances with your friends will, in a weird way, bring you closer together.

And today, dressed in my new clothes (side note: I actually got up early enough to do my hair this morning, so there’s a win!), I look as cute as EVER, simply because I denied my Pride and mooched off Hannah. Hannah 1. Pride 0. Or maybe everyone loses in this scenario?

Lesson learned: Lose credit card so friend will pay for shopping spree. Hold off paying back until they forget. Free clothes!

Real lesson learned: Keep better track of money. Hannah is a very good friend, and I will most certainly pay her back.





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