A bad afternoon..

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I've just had what can only be described as an awful experience.

SWMBO told me yesterday that our Charlotte and Adam were OK to go to their school friends (Another brother and sister same ages as ours too) house this afternoon to play, whilst she was at work, I was filled with trepidation but reluctantly agreed to let them go on their own, it's less than a 5 minute walk and there are no main roads to cross.

I let them go after lunch (about 1.00pm) and got down to a bit of business on the PC , then I rang my brother (It's his birthday tomorrow) yadda yadda yadda. It's great to be able to do things with out having to stop every 5 seconds to tell the kids "Don't do that , Don't do this " ETC .

I'd told Charlotte they had to be back home at 5.00pm (She has a watch and can tell the time) any way after two and a bit hours there was a little knock at the door , I thought they had come home a bit early, but to tell the truth I was rather relieved that I'd trusted them and they hadn't let me down!! I opened the the door to see their friends standing there saying "We've come to play with Charlotte and Adam" I thought they were playing a trick on me and went along with them laughing , as you do, after a few seconds I realized they weren't kidding, and that my pair really weren't with them.!!

I didn't so much start to panic but my mind is now doing somersaults trying to get some perspective on the situation and trying to keep a calm head.

I took the playmates back to their house and checked with their parents that my two hadn't even got there. They had been shopping and hadn't been back that long (Effing champion thought I , they'd made arrangements for a play day and then gone out instead!!) but they hadn't seen my two.

I then get in the car and drive around all the parks in the area but get some funny looks from people who just see this strange bloke staring at their kids. I ring SWMBO at work and tell her to leave as I'd lost the kids and needed her help (Especially where looking in th parks are concerned, " I'm a bit busy right now and can't leave!!"

" You what, ? A patient is more important than your kids? "

She reluctantly agreed to leave , I drove up got her and there then followed what can only be described as one of the most traumatic hour and a halves of my life as I drive around our area like a man possessed as it becomes more and more obvious that they are nowhere to be seen. I asked here there and every where if any body had seen them anywhere but get the usual short shrift from the local hoodies and then the odd clever twat blocking the road as he sees me driving a bit fast.

Suffice to say, we found another school freind who had seen them at a local park and had then seen them head off to Mc Donalds (A mile away in the opposite direction!!) with another girl. Well I shoot over there, but they'd gone . So back to the drawing board, and another trawl round the streets , till eventually SWMBO rings to tell me they'd been seen in another street half a mile in the opposite direction again!

I drive there like a mad man and find them playing with a total stranger (A kid of their age , but not from their school)

They'd just gone off on their own as their friends weren't in !! I suppose in a way it's my fault for trusting all involved , I trusted that SWMBO had arranged it properly, I trusted that the friends parents would not be out at the alloted time , and most of all I trusted my daughter to use common sense and come home if there was nobody in !!!

Ah well, all's well that ends well , so they say !!!! SWMBO is home from work now and going to lose myself in bottle or two of Red wine!!

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I know a different era but probably an everyday occurance not so long ago? I sometimes wonder if we over protect our kids? or take too dark a view of the world? That said can understand the worry and needless to say glad all ok etc, my 2 had a park right over the back fence and we assumed they were always on there, found out in later years the weren't!, to say nothing of the "staying at friends overnight" (hate that term sleep over!) only to find out they had "camped" in middle of kamikarzee island! (when it was about 8ft high with trees, shrubs etc) with chips or chinese plus underage booze from local shops. About only time we did worry was in their later teenage years when out till early hours at the clubs,

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Been there...

A visit to Tatton Park when my son aged seven disappeared from my side.An hour of panic searching with friends all round the lake.Eventually he was found at the main gate crying his eyes out.The staff were twenty feet away happily collecting money from visitors in their little hut.After calming myself and my son down.I went to the pay kiosk and gave them the biggest bollocking of their lives for ignoring a crying child.

The feeling in your gut when a child goes missing is something I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy.

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Am I so glad to hear that everything was alright in the end mate, thats another page read in the 'How To learn The Hard Way In Life' book. BTW i'd have loved to have been a fly on the wall when SWMBO said that she was a bit busy lol.

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What an awful experence for you, i know that gut feeling , my Daughter went missing in a supermarket once talk about panic. I am glad everything turned out ok

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Thanks for your kind comments folks, much appreciated. Funny thing about the whole experience, I did as I promised and attempted to lose myself in a couple of bottles of Red (SWMBO was in bed snoring her head off by 11.00pm) only to realise I was still feeling wide awake and sober at around 3.00am !! That's adrenalin for you !! (I got off to sleep no problem though)

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