Not what you call your average Saturday night random stop, you know?
So imagine my surpise when the officer had not one concern (35mph in a 25), not two (headlight out), but three (bike rack covering the license plate) and then four (registration sticker expired on said covered license plate). Holy bat violations! I was suddenly a'fluster.
Ok, calm down, let's see. Speeding, ok, oops. I mean, 25 mph is, like, moving backwards, but ok, I guess I was wrong. The officer said, "You took off from Hwy 11..."
Took off? Took off?.. Hardly... "when I noticed your headlight was out."
Wow, so... so... criminal.
At least it wasn't like the time I was going 86 in a 55. (There was no getting out of that little jam. Cringe.) At least I wasn't getting hauled to the station. (My dad was, as you can imagine, slightly less than pleased that time. Double-Cringe.) At least I wouldn't have to go to traffic school for a burnt-out headlight. (Would I? My aunt designed our local traffic school program, so I just wanted to, like, you know - test the program's efficacy for her. Double-Double-Cringe.)
The cop asked my husband to step outside so he could show him something, and had his hand on his gun all the while. I was really starting to feel like a criminal. It seems Rob had placed a towel under the bike rack so it wouldn't scratch the van and the towel had slipped down. And seeing as the registration was expired, it looked like we were trying to cover something up. (Which, of course, logically, was why I was "taking off" so fast from Hwy 11... sigh)
He showed Rob how to move the towel. "Yes, sir."
He showed him the burnt-out headlight. "Yes sir, I'll change that first thing Monday morning, sir."
He showed him the registration sticker, and thankfully I'd kept all the paperwork to prove that we had indeed registered it, but apparently the sticker hadn't come.
In the end he let me off with a verbal warning, thank the lucky stars. I've never gotten a warning! Once, when ticketed for speeding (at the ripe old age of 16) the cop snorted, "And if you cry, I'll give you a seatbelt ticket too!" (Hey, it was 1988 - no one wore seatbelts back then!) This is the first time I've ever gotten away with just a warning, and I would've jumped out of my van and kissed the cop if I didn't think he'd pull his gun and go all excessive force on me or something.
The kids had a good time of smirking and scolding "Moooommmmm..... you were baaadddd....."
Huh. They don't know the half of it.