I finally made it back home, under time and under budget, I only dropped an additional $70ish dollars today, buying gas, oil, and more soft drinks. I’ll do a bigger update tomorrow with some fresh photos of the HKIGTB-mobile, but for now I’ll leave you with this quick story.
You may remember that several posts ago, I pointed out that I felt pretty good because I hadn’t been pulled over. After all, the plates don’t match the car, and well, it is a 1987 Dodge Diplomat. Tonight, five minutes from home, in Urbandale, I broke that streak.
I was in the home stretch, rocking out to the bus on the radio, and all of the sudden I noticed those tell-tale headlights in my rear-view mirror. (Crown Victoria headlights are very disctinctive, and anyone who’s ever been pulled over has had plenty of time to memorize their exact shape) Checking the shadows in the side mirror I could see that it was a cop car, and in Urbandale no less. (For those of you who don’t live in the greater Des Moines area, keep in mind that Urbandale is the sort of place that doesn’t have any real crime, so the force spends most of it’s time manufacturing it’s own.)
Just as I started to think that I’d be able to cross over into the relative safety of Des Moines I saw flashing lights. I pulled off onto a side street, and before you know it, I was stepping out of the vehicle. (You’re right James, I should have replaced that tail light.) They didn’t comment about my out of state ID, or North Carolina title, but they did want to search the car. (After years of having long hair, and/or a beard, I’m used to getting profiled, and I’ve learned over the years that if they want to search the car, you’re better off just letting them do it. They’ll find a way to search it one way or another, and assuming you’re not carrying anything that you’re not supposed to be carrying, you can watch the whole scene with a smug smirk because they’re going to turn up empty handed.
So first we waited for the second car to show up, because lord knows, there’s nothing to do in Urbandale, so we might as well get the whole force out. This guy turns up in an unmarked Crown Victoria, which might have been a good disguise 30 years ago, but the only people driving Crown Vics these days are cops and grandmothers.
So they search, and they search, and then they search some more. I got a few good laughs out of watching them pull up the rear seat and stick their hands in places I was afraid to put the shop vac when I cleaned out the interior. They couldn’t get the glovebox open so they had to ask me for help. They went through my luggage, and in fact, I’m pretty sure I saw one of the guys sniff my dirty underwear. (Word to the wise buddy, I wore those for three days, I’d wash your hands ASAP)
So, since they didn’t find anything, they decided to let me go after giving me a stern warning to take those plates off.
Like I said, home on time and under budget, and I ran the gauntlet.
Check back tomorrow for a big blog post filled with the rest of today’s excitement and some decent shots of the HKIGTB-mobile.