Our Vacation Cottage On Wheels

Our Vacation Cottage On Wheels
2002 Mazda SUV ES-V6 & 2008 Cruiser Travel Trailer - Fun Finder X - 189FBR

Thursday, March 4, 2010

My First Brush With The Law

We're in southwestern Florida, in Naples, just north of Marco Island. We finally found some (warmer) weather, just a little over 100 miles south of Tampa, where we last reported in from. After only one day in the 70s in 2 months, we were ready to migrate further south. Naples is just west of the Everglades, in a direct line with Fort Lauderdale on the east coast.

Well, it hasn't been much different, weather wise, than Tampa, but it promises to be. We're truly in the tropics now and, even if it's forecasted to be in the 40s tonight, the coming week is supposed to be in the 70s and the week after that even warmer. Now that'll feel tropical, especially after the past 2 frigid months we just experienced.

We're staying in the Naples KOA. It's an older park with some miles on her, but she's well kept and very friendly. The staff is friendly, our neighbors are friendly; the Canadian couple with 3 small kids staying in the cabin just across the street are friendly - just about everyone we've met is friendly. As I've reported, this is not always true of other parks we've visited. Some parks have an environment that reeks of NYAH, NYAH! Our RV is bigger than your RV! And, when the weather is lousy, or the big live oak that's hanging over your RV is dropping acorns down on your roof all night, keeping your dog on edge and awake, which, by extension, is keeping you on edge and awake, it helps to be in a friendly park. Friendly people commiserate with each other over life's problems, they chat about their latest RV'ing disasters, like sleepless nights caused by, as one conspiracist reported, squirrels bombarding our RV's with unsalted nuts, AND they make a lot of extra bean soup and then invite everyone in the park to get together and share the surplus (this happened tonight; the soup was good and the company was friendly, although I expect that a lot of RV's will need airing out in the morning...). Friendliness just makes everything nicer...

But this post is about more than friendliness. It's also about sex. And my first run in with the law...

You see, while chatting with a couple of our new friendly friends, we got to talking about old movies. That discussion reminded me of my first brush with the law; all because of sex and being in the wrong place at the wrong time... I didn't tell them this story then, but I've decided to share it with you now:

I was fifteen and my hormones were raging; about what, I wasn't quite sure, but it involved women. Being that it was 1960 and I looked like Richie Cunningham from Happy Days and the only women I knew where my sister, my cousins and my Mom, I didn't know very much about sex. Except that I wanted to know more.

On the night that everything went terribly wrong, I was alone, walking home from Freeport, a neighboring town on Long Island, New York a few miles from my Mom and Dad's home in Baldwin. I was walking along a lonely and dark stretch of road near my home, wondering what the big deal was about what I had just walked several miles to see. There were large greenhouses along my side of the road and an empty field across the road. Empty, that is, except for the car that was parked just across the road from where I stood, halfway on and halfway off the road, with its headlights on and its driver's door wide open; with no driver in sight. Thinking this strange, I stopped and stood there in the dark wondering what was up.

It was exactly then that 3 police cars, one of them unmarked, came zooming up from both directions and screeched to a halt, surrounding the abandoned car. Thinking that I had stumbled across something really interesting; better than Red Skeleton, Sid Caesar, or even Bonanza, I stood frozen in place, watching and waiting for what might happen next.

As I watched, the cops jumped out of their cars and, with hands on their holstered pistols, shone their flashlights in the abandoned car and neighboring field. Seeing nothing suspicious, they huddled together. The plain clothes cops, probably detectives, seemed to be giving the uniformed cops directions; pointing up and down the road, back into the field, and then straight across the street... at me. All six heads and flashlights spun around and locked in on me, standing there in the dark, staring back at them.

Uh oh! I thought, a bit late, realizing that maybe I was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

"Hey You!" One of the detectives yelled, "Stay right there!" All six of them headed across the street, fanning out a bit as they approached, I guess to be better positioned to head me off if I tried to run for it. All 4 foot, 11 inches of me (I didn't reach my full 6 feet until 11th grade, so at 15 I looked like I was about 12), dressed in my striped t-shirt, rolled-up dungarees and black-and-white high Converse sneakers, was quickly surrounded by 6 large and angry looking policemen who seemed to believe that they had captured their man... or little kid...

"What're you doin' here?" demanded one of them.

"Uh, I'm just going home..."

"Where from?" demanded another.

"A football game," I said, turning very red.

"What football game?" demanded the first detective, taking charge of the interrogation.

"Uh, Freeport played Baldwin..." I lied.

"Oh yeah? Who won?" He demanded. "What was the score?" immediately demanded the other.

"Uh, Uh..."

"Well?" "WELL?" "WELL?"

That did it. They had worn me down. They had broken me. They knew that I was lying. I was in big trouble now...

I threw myself on their mercy. "I'm sorry! Iwasn'treallyatafootballgameIwenttothemoviesinFreeport... I, uh, I uh... IwenttoseeTheWorldofSuzieWong!Myfather'sgoingtokillme!" Sob...

"Huh?" "Whuh?" "Whaaaat?" "What did he say?" Several of them asked.

The older detective shrugged and said, "He said that he's coming home from the movies. He went to see that new flick, the one about Suzie Wong..."

"Suzie who?" Someone asked.

"You know, the one about the prostitute..." Someone else responded.

"Ohhh..." Several of them said, nodding...

"Yeahhh, that one. He snuck off to see the movie and now he's afraid his dad's goin' to find out and whip his butt." The younger detective summed up.

The older looking detective frowned and asked, "Is that right kid? Is that what your doin' here? You don't know anything about that car over there?"

"Yessir, Yessir, Yessir... I mean Nosir!" Sob.

The flashlight beams started to bob around as more and more of them began laughing. I didn't see what was so funny... They didn't know my father...

"Hey kid!"

"Yessir!" Sob...

"G'WON!" Yelled the detective, stifling a laugh, "GET OUTA HERE!"

I ran all of the way home. I never mentioned my encounter with the cops. I told my dad that Baldwin had won the game. He was watching Jackie Gleason. He didn't seem to hear me. I could hear Jackie's character Ralph, a bus driver, yelling at his wife, "One of these days, Alice, one of these days, it's gonna be right to the moon, Alice, RIGHT TO THE MOON!" I gulped and went to my room...

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