Let's see, now - Spanish health, three debit, NIE identity, bus travel, driving licence. This is a list of the cards that I carry with me at all times but, having just written them down here and not owning a car, I realise that I, actually, I can leave the driving licence in the house along with two of the three debit cards since I only ever use one and very sparingly at that.
Even so, losing my wallet would imply all kinds of cancellation telephone calls and card renewals most of which, I imagine, would involve those weird, disembodied recorded voices and increasingly exasperated cries of despair lovingly interspersed with Jumping Jack Flash arranged for piano and flute on an endless loop.
Lately, I've noticed a worrying trend down at the pub - blokes with mobile phone protection covers which double up as card holders. This means that these deluded chaps keep their phone plus all of their important cards together in one 'handy' pocketbook. Given the plethora of information many of us keep on our mobiles these days, losing this data combination of cards and phone would, presumably, oblige the owner to spend the rest of eternity yelling 'No, not elf guard, health card!' at incrementally increasing volume levels into his best mate's phone because, you know, his has been lost or stolen.
The only possible solution I can think of is, frankly, pants. Specifically cargo pants - you know those trousers with pockets all over the place that electricians, sound engineers and plumbers wear causing them to swear a lot because they can never remember which pocket they put the Phillips screwdriver in. Anyway, for most men, sporting a pair of snazzy cargo pants and distributing each card into a different pocket would mean the chances of ever losing them all at once would be negligible. Well, except for bachelors, of course - they're more than likely to shove everything together into the washing machine once every six months with scant regard for personal data or, indeed, pockets. They live by different rules.
Every time I see someone in the pub clutching the phone/card combination, I'm overcome with stress, imagining the disastrous implications of any loss or theft. Actually, I might start keeping a few cargo pants catalogues behind the bar, nonchalantly distributing them whenever it's deemed necessary.