Lost car keys at the Royal Tattoo in Edinburg Scotland and the Scottish Police Bobby

I was stationed in RAF Alconbury England in the United States Air Force in 1980. I have Scottish blood, so my friend Ted Kularski and I decided to use a 3 day holiday to visit Edinburg and attend the Royal Tattoo. The event is a lot like a circus competition conducted inside the walls of a large castle. There were about a thousand people or more sitting on football bleacher seats. The ceremony was beautiful with the guards marching along the top of the castle walls playing the bagpipes. After the tattoo ended Ted and I went out to start my 1978 Datsun B210 Fastback. I searched my pockets and looked through the windows for my keys. Then we walked into the pub and had a pint of Guinness Extra Stout. Then we borrowed a coat hanger and went out to unlock the door. I was pushing the coat hanger through the top of the window. When a Scottish Bobby approached me and asked what I was doing. I told him that I was trying to steal a car. He backed up and stated that I was under arrest. Then I explained that it was my car and that I had lost the keys. He had a good laugh. Then he opened the car door for me. He searched the car and could not find the keys. Then he tried to hot wire it, but that did not work.

I explained that the keys must have fell out of my pocket the Royal Tattoo and that we were in the Air Force and did not have much money. Between us we had $35 to our name. It was Saturday and we had to be back at work on Tuesday. The Bobby escorted us back into the castle where another Tattoo show had already begun. We found our previous seats and then the three of us crawled around under the bleachers for an hour looking for the keys. We gave up. The Bobby gave us 10 pounds of British money and took us back to the pub. He explained that the Datsun place would be open on Monday and we could get a new set of keys made. We thanked him and he went back on his beat.

Ted and I had a few bitters and pretty much resolved that we would spend a couple of nights sleeping in the Datsun. We were discussing our plight when a group of guys overheard our conversation from the next table. They invited us to sit with them and brought us a round of bitters. Then they invited us to come home with them for the weekend. They were a group of 6 engineers just out of college and they shared a beautiful majestic 500 year old house in Edinburgh. They gave us a great time, much laughter and storytelling, a couple of cots to sleep on, fed us and furnished plenty of bitter. Then on Monday they loaned us their girlfriends to take us on a guided tour of beautiful Scotland. We made it back to Alconbury about 7 AM Tuesday and had to be back at work at 8. We had a wonderful time that I have thought of ever since. If you are Ted, the Bobby, or one of the engineers, I would love to hear from you. Email smokeschool@yahoo.com .






Other embarrassing stories about keys in ignition:

A few years ago we were attending a Earth Day Parade in Baton Rouge.  I returned to my truck after the parade and found out that I had locked the keys in the ignition. My brother Ricky and his police buddies were directing traffic around the corner. I walked over there and asked if I could borrow a Slim Jim to unlock the old 83 Chevy Silverado. Ricky went to his police car to get it. I returned to my truck and tried to insert it through the crack in the window. After great effort I noticed the window as already open. I stuck my hand in and opened the door. Then I returned the Slim Jim to my brother. He said that I managed to open the door in record time. I just told him that I was an expert.


On April 30, 2008 as the police chased OJ Simpson in the White Bronco my mother and I were driving from our home in Washington Indiana to Branson Missouri and some smoke schools in Arkansas. I decided to stop in Memphis for a hotel room. Momma was sleeping in the front seat of my wife’s brand new Chevy Caprice, when I went in the hotel to check in. The OJ slow chase was on the TV at the check in bench. I noticed the motel door open and turned around to see momma walking in the door. She needed the restroom. After I checked in I went out and found the doors were locked, the motor was still running, and the keys were in the ignition. I tried to use a coat hanger to open the door, but could not get it to work. I thought about breaking the window but it was my wife’s brand new car. As a last resort we called pop a lock.

It ain't over until the fat cat sings


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