Dear Annie: Last weekend, I stayed at an upscale motel where they serve breakfast in the lobby. After eating, I went to the elevator, and a little boy, perhaps 6 years old, left the table where his father was eating and announced, “I’m going up to Mom.” Dad agreed, and the boy rode up to the third floor with me, chatting the whole time, before getting off on my floor and pounding on a door farther down the hall.
Annie, this child could have been abducted at any time. The elevator was at the intersection of two hallways and was 10 feet from a stairwell.
Anyone could have gotten on that elevator or been in the hallway when he got off.
I was tempted to say something to the parents, but figured I would be told to mind my own business. Please remind parents that the world is not child friendly and safe, and even the most responsible “big boy” or girl could disappear in a matter of seconds. — Concerned in Texas
Dear Texas: We appreciate the heads up. Most children are safer than we fear, but still, parents need to be cautious and alert. A motel is filled with strangers, and there are hallways, doorways and empty rooms where kids can be lost — or taken. It is foolish to allow young children to run around unseen and unsupervised in such places, not only because the child can lose his way, but because it presents an opportunity for those with malicious intent. Next time, speak up. Even if the parents tell you to MYOB, they might be more circumspect in the future.