Norman Gortsby sits on a park bench in the Park where he comes at dusk. After an older gentleman leaves, a young man plunks himself down, uttering an expletive.
"You don't seem in a very good temper," said Gortsby, judging that he was expected to take due notice of the demonstration.
The young man states that no one would be in a good mood if someone had experiences what he has.
"Yes?" said Gortsby dispassionately.
Feeling encouraged to relate what has happened to him, the young man explains that he arrived in the city with reservations to a hotel in Bershire Square. However, when he arrived in this square, there was no hotel. Instead, there is a cinema constructed where the hotel has been. And, since he had no where to go, the taxi driver suggested a hotel in another part of the city, so he went there.
Once at the new hotel, the young man wrote to his contacts and told them where he relocated. Then, he decided to step out for soap since he loathes hotel soap. And, while he was out, the young man wanted to have a drink in a bar, and to look at the shops. But, by the time he decided to return to the hotel, he realized that he had forgotten the name of the hotel, as well as on what street it is located.
So, now the young man is lost. While he can wire his contacts, his letter will not arrive until tomorrow; so, for the time being, he has nowhere to stay the night.
"I suppose you think I've spun you rather an impossible yarn," said the young man presently, with a suggestion of resentment in his voice.
Gortsby commiserates, saying that he once was lost, too. But, counters the young man, he is not in a foreign country as Gortsby was, and if he were, he could contact his embassy and not have to spent a night on the Embankment. He concludes by saying to Gortsby, "I'm glad, anyhow, that you don't think the story outrageously improbable."
Gortsby says that the tale has been good, except for the part about the soap since he should be able to produce this item to verify what he says. Then, the young man jambs his hands into his pockets, but he cannot find the soap. Upon hearing these words, the young man jumps to his feet and searches his pockets. "I must have dropped it," he concludes. Gortsby says to lose his hotel and then his soap is to much to believe.