The list of lost items is lengthy and very costly.

We parked near the door, broad daylight, items covered with coats.
The car was locked.  It has no trunk (and we've heard of an incident  
of trunk punched out from interior at Tower Grove).

Things we would do differently:
There were no cameras in the lot (there were at the Denny's, our  
other option for lunch); choose the monitored restaurant.

We walked into the restaurant: me empty-handed and June with a small  
clutch billfold-purse.  It's likely we were observed.

In the future (as in rebuilding the barn and getting a new horse to  
put in it), I will do this and suggest something similar to others:

I will have a medium-size day pack.  In it will be stowed:   
Binoculars, scope, iPod and any other valuable items.  If binocs/ 
scope have been used in transit, I'll place them in the pack as I  
leave the car at rest stops or restaurant--perhaps quite obviously,  
rather than furtively.

I will have that day pack with me, strapped on, or carried by strap,  
or strap around my ankle or over shoulder the whole time, every  
minute I am away from car.

Just maybe, this demonstration of valuables taken out of the car will  
deter thieves from impromptu inspiration that the car is a profitable  

Bodacious birding,

Edge Wade
Columbia, MO
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