If i was to just pocket the money i would feel bad for days. I know if i dropped a 100 dollars i would want it back, because i would really need it. Losing 100 dollars would be horrible. I could almost buy 8 cans of baby formula for that much money.I would return it. You really have to put yourself in someone else's shoes when you are in that position.
Oh sure I know what you're saying but I was satisfied in believing that it was her money. Maybe it was her behavior as I walked away. She seemed confused and then relieved just as I would be in the same situation. I've thrown cash in my purse without organizing it in my wallet and imo that's a surefire way to lose it.
in your situation, because of the way you described the lady's action I would have given it back. I was just saying in general that I wouldn't trust most people in this situation. I know if someone approached me and said "are you missing some money" after I checked my wallet and saw that I wasn't I'd tell them "no" because even if they don't find the owner they deserve it over me because in that situation I could not go and find the owner. At least not without the person who gave me the money or witnesses calling me on it. And it be like me taking credit from him. So if I said yes and it wasn't mine I'd have no choice but to pocket it, or look like a douche.
I think in your actual scenario of a busy place with lots people nearby where someone likely just pulled something out of their pocket moments ago (because in a busy place, I don't think money like that would sit unnoticed for long), I would do what you did and ask people nearby if they dropped it. I'm not very good about thinking of making people verify their word or anything. I think I'd read on someone's expression that real look of panic and relief, one followed quickly by the other, and know the money really was theirs. I'd feel good knowing that it had been returned thinking about how I'd probably feel if I'd pulled something out of my pocket and had my money fall out unnoticed (which could easily happen to me). I don't know what I'd do if someone claimed it was theirs, but I could feel in my experience of them that they were lying. I wouldn't keep it from them, but I might still ask others about it and if I felt I'd found the true owner, I might let them know who had claimed it and let them sort out the deceit.
As I imagined the original scenario, I was imagining that deserted bathroom with money lying around that no one else had likely noticed for a while. My sense in that scenario would be that the owners of the money were not close by. I'd like to say noble and well-thought out things, but I know deep down the truth is whether I'd keep it or not would depend on my own financial state. The most likely scenario is that I'd just note it, maybe have a moment of longing for what I could buy with it, and then leave it sit to await it's fate, whatever that might be. However, if I was in a place where some additional money could really be of benefit to me, I think my instinct would be to take the money. I don't know if I'd let a manager know I'd taken it right away and do the waiting thing or not. I'm shy and actually that would probably keep me from talking to a manager in person. I suspect I'd take it with the intent of spending it on whatever my imagination came up with, but then with some time I'd begin to doubt and ask lots of people their opinion of how I should handle it. Some I'm sure would say spend it, but most of the people I associate with I think would advise what many here spoke of. I suspect I'd hear a morality in their advice that would resonate with my own and I'd probably call the location I found it to ask if anyone had inquired about lost money and then leave my information if anyone did. Then I'd get feedback about how long it would be appropriate to wait before spending it from friends or legal resources. I think after that time had passed, I'd finally be able to spend it, but I'd probably forever feel a little guilty about it.
"We don't see things as they are,
we see things as we are."
Excuse me, I'm going to go ask that gentleman with crooked teeth, a bowler and a monocle if he knows where I can get a cup of tea around here
That's just the thing though isn't it. If you've been dealt two aces there's a significantly reduced chance of getting a third. Stereotypes are present for a reason (this could be a big old subversion of a thread). They do work but only within the boundaries which they were made for.
Anyhow I was going for the whole Spitting Image approach. You know, big chin, huge nose lookalike.