01/14/1998 at 12:00 AM EST

A $2.5 million, 18th-century cello belonging to Yo-Yo Ma, the world's most famous living cellist, who forgot the instrument he'd left in a New York taxicab's trunk, Saturday afternoon. As a result of an all-points bulletin, the cello was retrieved just two hours later -- all because Ma, 43, was smart enough to have asked his cab driver for a receipt (with the taxi's medallion number on it).

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