Monday, May 27, 2013

Another Part of the Flag

I’m hungry.

I am too.

Where are you going? You just passed the mall!

I KNOW I just passed the mall!!

Well, where are you going!!!

Be quiet. I KNOW what I’m doing!!!!

UMPH! I mutter as I uselessly tap my breaks.

Looking in my rear view mirror, I see him pull out. He drives behind me as I try to convince myself that he’s not following me; knowing that he is. As I approach a turn lane, bright blue lights begin to flash on his vehicle along with that dreaded sound, “WEEEOOO WEEEOOO.”

I remain in the turn lane with my gear now in “park.” I turn on the hazard lights—why, I don’t know. He’s right behind me so no one will be blowing their horn at me to tell me to move.

Now at my window, in a slight tough guy voice, he says, “Ma’am, do you know how fast you were going?

No. I was too busy yelling at my kid and I’m hungry.

His voice becomes normal as he says, “License and registration, please.”

“I hope I have it,” as I fumble around in the glove compartment. I pass it to him and say, “Thank you.” What am I thanking him for? Duh.

He goes to his car.

He’s back.

Have you had a speeding ticket within five years, Ma’am?

“Noooo, I’ve never had a speeding ticket”, I say in my “turn on the feminism” voice, hoping, uselessly again, that somehow he can tear up the ticket that is already written, knowing that he can’t.

As he explains the ticket and strongly advises me to go to court and to take the online driving school course so that I won’t incur points, I am still seething. But then I look up at his face again, for more than a split second. He is boyishly handsome; young enough to be my son. And because he has seen my license, he knows that I am old enough to be his mother.

It is the day before Mother’s Day. In a kind and sympathetic voice, he says, “Don’t let this ruin your weekend, Ma’am. Drive safely."

I’m not going to say which of my three daughters (affectionately named Girl #1, Girl #2, and Girl #3) caused me to get the speeding ticket, for the witnessing of her mother being pulled over like a common criminal (in her mind) is punishment enough. She is very upset and naively offers to pay the fine.

Actually, it is not her fault and I tell her.

It was my fault, honey; I was speeding and got caught. (Actually, I wasn’t until there was a simultaneous surge of pressure on the gas pedal with the surge of my blood pressure during our little exchange over our meal search.)  I should’ve eaten before we left home so that I wouldn’t have gotten irritable.

We go to the mall, eat, and have a peaceful shopping time.

This little life episode was a couple weeks ago. Today is Memorial Day. As I was hanging our American Flag this morning, I thought of our military—my father and stepfather being veterans. I also thought of a cousin who lost his life in Vietnam. A vision of The Uniform entered my mind along with its representation of protection and service. And then I thought of the young police officer  who risks his life daily. I imagine he’s alive and well, so hopefully, he gets a chance to eat something from the grill today, and gets occasional recognition and thanks for what he does.

Memorial Day thoughts? Traffic violation thoughts? Other thoughts?


Mari said...

I got a speeding ticket about 6 months ago - not paying attention to my speed and I had to pay for it!
It's maddening to pay that out, but it was my own fault.
I must admit that on Memorial day I always think of our Military, but our police officers also deserve honor. Thanks for pointing that out.

Rob-bear said...

In Canada, we do most of our remembering on Remembrance Day, November 11th. We have big ceremonies/services.

I hope you've had a good holiday. Ticked notwithstanding.

Blessings and Bear hugs!
Bears Noting
Life in the Urban Forest (poetry)

Shelly said...

Lovely remembrances, not so lovely ticket. I got one about a year ago, my first in about 30 years. You have a wonderful attitude to turn it around and be thankful for those in uniform.

There's always something good in the bad~

Buckeroomama said...

Sorry to hear about the ticket, but I thought it was sweet that he offered some kind words at the end.

Hope you had a lovely weekend anyway. :)

Linda Hensley said...

I guess you can join the rest of us who've racked up a ticket or two in life. Just maybe it gave your daughters a lesson about driving safely when people are making us nuts? Keep smiling! As Memorial Day reminds us, there are definitely worse things that can happen. I hope you enjoyed your holidays.

Tabor said...

I haven't gotten a speeding ticket since I was a teenager and I hated it then. I am not the best driver, but I do not speed. Hubby on the other hand gets a speeding ticket almost every time we visit Colorado!

Unknown said...

I was pulled over a couple years ago going too fast down a long hill. My speed had crept up and I didn't realize it. Just like you, the patrolman was boyishly handsome and young enough to be my son. I knew batting my eyes wasn't going to work but somehow I got off with a warning. Maybe being a mother figure works too. LOL I always watch my speed on that hill now which I guess is the whole point.

Julie Magers Soulen Photography

Stephanie said...

With your eleogant thoughts of Memorial day the stress of a speeding ticket doesn't seem as big a deal does it? Hope you enjoyed your long weekend, and your Mother's Day.

Abby said...

It's nice that you've got empathy for the young police officer. Yes, they are also serving our country. Someone out there is is mom. (Still, he could've let you off with a warning? Or were you REALLY hungry and irritated?? :)

Rebecca S. said...

You were good to notice that young officer was just trying to do his job. But, too bad about the speeding ticket. It happens to the best of us. I have never been ticketed, but one of these days I'm sure I'll get caught speeding in a school zone. I seem to find it hard to remember to slow down enough! I hope you had a good long weekend!

Auntie sezzzzzz... said...

Sweet post.

Any gal who is or has been a mother, understands.


Joanna Jenkins said...

Sorry about the ticket. We have all differnt types of traffic school in CA-- Comedy School, Pizza School (that serves free pizza), and the likes. Hope you get a fun class.

Mage said...

What a nice post. Yes, go to traffic school. That will wipe the problem away.

RYN: thanks for reading and commenting on my blog. Yes, I was in the Army during the early Vietnam years. I excaped the Finance Corps and it's endless numbers to build traveling sets for an entertainment program. It was wonderful fun. I was not a good fit in the army, at all. After I got out, the GI bill paid for a lot of years in college.