Today, I got to meet a police officer (who is so much fun, that I’d make her my new friend if it wouldn’t seem oddly suspicious…) and toured the police station, as well as a police cruiser. I had a fabulous time!
First of all, I got to get a mental image of how all the parts and pieces go together. Cops episodes just don’t do that for you, and if you watch enough of them in a row, you get a real appreciation for how much it would hurt to be taken down and hand-cuffed. That does not look comfortable! I’m not ashamed to say that I would cry. (I’d also take my hands out of my pockets when asked, for the record.) 😉
That’s not the point here, though. My contact with the police has always been friendly. I’ve never even been pulled over before. My six-year-old likes to make conversation with the cops running speed traps when we go for walks, and they are really kind to him. They’ll stop and chat, answer his questions, listen to him tell about his day at school. I like the local law enforcement to recognize us–and our town is small enough that it’s actually possible.
Anyway, this wasn’t a Cops episode or a speed trap conversation, this was a tour of an actual, working police station. I got to peek into holding cells, learn a few scanner codes and sit in the driver’s seat of a police car.
And do you know why? Besides research for this current book I signed a contract for, I’d like to pitch a cop series to my editor (I’ve already received a warm reception on the idea) and I need to make sure I have my details straight. There is just something about a hero in uniform, you know? Strong, protective, sweet, maybe a bit of a wounded past… then you give him a gun and a badge, and it’s a winning combination!
In my dedication to research for my next novel, I took my son with me and trotted down to our local fire station. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but when I got there, a very kind Deputy Fire Chief invited me in for a chat, and he’s a wealth of information! In fact, I’ll go back later on in the week and attempt to get the last of my questions answered.
My son was enthralled with the fire trucks, as you can well imagine. So we stopped to peek at them before walking home again.
We are –>this close<– to spring in our neck of the woods, but the sidewalks were still pretty slippery. So on our way home, while telling my son to be careful because leaping onto icy puddles might not be the smartest idea in the world, I slipped and fell on the ice. Being the dedicated blogger than I am, I would have taken a picture of that icy sidewalk for your empathetic appreciation, but I had an audience.
Well, not much of an audience. There was my son staring down at me in surprise (I was flat out!) and a couple of cars slowed and offered to stop and give me a hand, but I waved them on, embarrassed enough by my tumble. It hurt, but not enough to stop me from going home under my own steam. I love our community. It’s friendly enough that strangers care if a mom wipes out on the sidewalk while they drive past.
See? Research is fun… and slightly dangerous. 😉