Besides working half an hour closer to home than usual and getting off at 3 rather than 4, my day was pretty normal – Nothing too exciting or out of the ordinary had happened. As I drove home, rather than taking the normal route home from Princeville I decided to go down a road I’d never been down before. I cruised down the narrow, pothole riddled road wondering just where it would let out. I had an idea of where the road might come out, but I soon found out that I was wrong – the road was a dead end.
I turned around and started heading back to the main road. Not even a mile back down the road, I noticed a police car parked at the end of a driveway. As soon as I passed him, he pulled out and started following me (with his lights off); Odd, since I wasn’t doing anything illegal. At least, not to my knowledge.
I made a couple turns, and found a road that I knew would lead me home; all the while the police car followed closely. As crested the next to the last hill before the Spoon River (and the end of Peoria County/Beginning of Stark County) he flipped his lights on. Just a little ways down the road was the entrance to a field, so I pulled in there. The police man got out of his car and walked up to my window.
“What were you doing driving down that road?”
I told him that I was on my way home from work, and that I was just exploring to see if I could find a new route home.
“Hmm… okay. Can I see some identification please?”
I pulled out my wallet and handed him my license.
“And do you have the registration papers for the car?”
I reached into the glovebox and handed him the card.
“Alrighty. I’m going to go check these out really quick.”
He went back to his car, and was back in a couple minutes.
“Okay. The reason I stopped you is because there was a robbery at a house down that road – I didn’t recognize you or your car; a little odd to see a new face driving down a dead end road. Just to be safe, I’m going to need to ask you to get out of the car so I can search you.”
I shut the engine down, and climbed out. After a quick pat-down (and after confiscating my knife for the time being), he asked if I would mind if he searched my car. I gave the okay, and he did. Of course, he didn’t find anything and let me be on my way.
That is the true story of my very first encounter with the police.
Work’s been super slow for a couple weeks. Last week I worked just over ten hours, and so far this week I’ve only worked for about three hours. It’s been a little frustrating not having the work (or the money), so I started looking for a part-time job yesterday. I couldn’t find anything, so on a whim I decided to see what options there were for full-time jobs in Peoria. Bingo! There were several that I’m either qualified for, or will train new employees.
If I’ve learned anything lately, it’s been that it’s unwise to rush into something without lots of prayer and thought. So I decided to go walking on a bike trail near my house and pray/think about whether I should try to get a new job, or keep working for Fedi.
There’s something about beautiful weather and crisp, clean air that aids thought. I felt a calm while I was walking (and running, a little bit), and I realized that what I choose to do for a career isn’t what matters – it’s times when I can enjoy God’s creation, get to know Him better, spend quality time with people, and be a blessing: it’s times like those that matter.
I also decided that I haven’t given the Hungarian Handyman enough time – sure, I’m not making any money right now, but it doesn’t really hurt me too much since I’m living with my folks. Instead of focussing on my problem of not having work, I can find other things to do. My cello has been neglected a bit lately – I can catch up on practice. I started Oakey back into riding training last week – I can continue that.
So, for now, I’m sticking it out. If anything, this is another opportunity to practice patience.
When I woke up the next morning the sun was just peaking over the mountains on the horizon. It was fairly chilly – enough to make me wish I had some matches to make a fire with. I pulled my jacket tighter around my chest to warm up. I knew that if I wouldn’t be able to get out of this back-country within the month, I’d have have to do something about building an enclosed shelter before Autumn changed to Winter.
After climbing out of my trench I walked to the spring where I took a long draught. After being refreshed by the water, I decided to take a look around to see what I could find for food – mint was good, but it alone wouldn’t be enough to keep me alive. I packed all my possessions into my backpack (my captors had been kind enough to leave me with a pocket knife, water bottle, and bandana when they dropped me off) and set out.
As I walked, I subconsciously was watching for the herd of horses. They were fascinating and frightening to me all at the same time; I desperately wanted to see them again, but at the same time I was terrified of running into them.