Finding a lost wallet can make a person feel happy enough to jump for joy, start dancing or even break out in song – and one Walgreens customer in Falmouth, Mass., did just that after a helpful store manager reunited him with his missing billfold.
Luckily for everyone in the store (and within earshot), the customer was a professional: Evan Dando of the Boston-based, alt-rock band The Lemonheads.
When a lost wallet was turned in to store manager Mike Ghelfi earlier this year, he did what he normally would to reunite it with its owner: he tried to find a name on one of the cards inside and began searching.
“I actually didn’t recognize the name when I saw it at first,” says Ghelfi. “Which is kind of ironic because I was a big fan of his band when I was in school.”
Ghelfi searched for the name from the license online and within seconds he was transported back to his days at Providence College in Rhode Island, where the music of Dando and The Lemonheads served as a soundtrack to his college life. To this day, he holds on to one of their albums: “It’s a Shame About Ray.”
But the shame about Ghelfi, at that moment, was that the lead singer of a band he loved growing up was missing his wallet, and Ghelfi wanted nothing more than to return it to him. So he took his search to Twitter where he quickly found a post from Dando himself:
I dropped my wallet with my drivers license and two debit cards in it . i was walking from the mariner hotel to the palmer lot— Evan Dando (@Evan_Dando) February 27, 2021
Ghelfi replied to the tweet, letting Dando know that his wallet had been found and was waiting for him in the office safe until he was able to come and pick it up. Dando told Ghelfi he was on his way, and Ghelfi waited in anticipation.
Excited at the prospect of having the musician in his store, Ghelfi quickly thought to grab a box of Lemonhead candy, in case he had the opportunity get an autograph. But when Dando called the store to let them know he was on his way, he said he’d be sending a friend in to grab the wallet.
“So, of course, I thought that was totally fine,” says Ghelfi. “As long as he’s getting his wallet back, then our job is done and we can feel good about that. We did our job and got it back to him and that was the important thing.”
When Dando’s friend came into the store, another team member, knowing Ghelfi himself wouldn’t do it, asked if they would take the boxes of candy to Dando to see if he would sign them – just to let him know he had some fans inside the store that were happy to get his wallet back to him.
The friend agreed, and when presented with the candy boxes and request, Dando didn’t just want to sign a couple of autographs for his fans inside the Walgreens store – he wanted to do them one better.
“All of a sudden, in walks Evan Dando, masked up and carrying his guitar case into our store,” says Ghelfi. “He pulled out the guitar, started playing and gave us our own little private show right there in front of the potato chips!”
Dando played a couple of songs and then stopped to talk with Ghelfi and his team for a few minutes. Ghelfi told him about how much he loved his music in college, and how he still had the band’s album.
Right on cue, Dando pulled his guitar back out and played the song, “Confetti” from the album Ghelfi had owned and loved since college.
Store manager Mike Ghelfi proudly displays his Lemonheads CD and signed candy box.
“It’s not every day you get an impromptu acoustic performance from a special guest like that in your store,” says Ghelfi. “I’ll remember that forever.”
Dando finished up his set, signed the Lemonhead candy boxes and made his way out of the Falmouth Walgreens store, his wallet in one hand and his guitar in the other. Behind him, a store full of team members and customers smiled and applauded.
Not a bad reward for a job well done.