While I was in Canada, one of the things I wanted to see was a Mountie.
That didn’t happen.
Today in Houston, I saw a mounted policeman.
He had another policeman mind his horse while he went into a building. When he came out, he got back on his horse and calmly rode down the street.
This chain of events made me happy, even though he wasn’t a Canadian Mountie.
As we were riding the bus back to our hotel, we were stopped at a red light when we saw the Police pull a car over on the highway nearby. There were several police cars with lights flashing, officers with guns drawn and pointed, and several “alleged baddies” with their hands in the air, then getting handcuffed.
The light changed and the bus drove on, leaving the unfolding drama behind us.
I thought at the time that it was reassuring to know most of the police in Houston are working to serve and protect the community instead of yelling at tourists who clearly have no idea where they are going.
Today we got stopped by a fare inspector and a policeman as we alighted the train at Main St Square Station in downtown Houston.
Thankfully we had figured out to “swipe on” with our Metro Q card before we got on the train, or we would have been in as much trouble as the very unhappy young man who was insisting there was money on his card even though there clearly wasn’t.
The fare inspector told me to keep going, so I walked ahead. The policeman, who had not heard him tell me to go ahead, decided I was disobeying orders yelled at me and told me I had to wait.
Well come ON guys, get your act together! I didn’t mind waiting my turn, and I hadn’t done anything wrong, so don’t go yelling at me in your big bossy policeman voice!
The fare inspector was very apologetic, but he didn’t let the railway cop hear him saying he was sorry.
Clearly, I’m a bigger security risk than I realised.
We stopped at a roadside information centre in Hartford, VT where there were several police vehicles, including a K-9 unit parked and talking casually.
Just as I was taking a typical tourist “rubbernecking” photograph of the police units, a shiny black truck pulled into the stop and sideswiped one of the police pickups.
The police yelled at the driver to stop, then to stop the engine and get out of the vehicle. The police dog barked and strained at its lead; they are trained to protect their officers and vehicles as well as sniffing out the bad stuff and things/people that need to be found. One officer picked up the fender of the pickup and tossed it in the back of the vehicle.
In those couple of very dramatic seconds, the truck driver responded by hanging out of the window of his truck and yelling at the police for parking in a stupid place.
Really? That’s how you’re going to respond to a bunch of angry cops when you have just tried to park on one of their vehicles?
We watched, quite amused, as the police went over every inch of his truck looking for violations.
As the officer with the dog brought his K-9 workmate back to his vehicle, I explained that I was a tourist from Australia and I would like a picture of his dog. They were both happy to pose for a picture, although Mitch the German Shepherd was still more interested in the scowling truck driver a few metres away.