The winds of “progress” are blowing Australia closer to becoming a Police State.
This is seen with the unprecedented intrusion into the travelling publics freedom to move. Police blockades of major highways inconvenience travellers especially those on a schedule. At any time regardless of a persons own itinerary Police can approach and demand to search your vehicle under the pretext of looking for the transportation of guns and drugs or anything else they can think of.
With ten minutes till showtime I were sat outside the tourist information centre in Narrandera. No other vehicles in the roadside parking bays. In the back of my mind I had the memory of angled parking here. Regardless I parked parallel to the gutter as my stop were to be brief.
I had forgotten to apply deodorant. Remembering as a child being put off by old people that smell bad I climbed into the back of the Toyota Commuter Bus, that has become home, to remedy the situation. As I shoved the deodorant back in its bag I noticed a pair of black shoes standing beside the van in close proximity. It were a classic – catch sight of the shoes, the gaze travells up navy blue trouser leg, past the pistol, capsicum spray and batman utility belt to the face looking intently in my direction.
First thought “Whats he looking at?”
Second thought “Me.”
Third thought “So what happens now?”
Then I opened the door.
“We’re targeting and searching interstate registered vehicles in our war on the trafficking of drugs and guns”.
Did I mention it were ten minutes before a show and I were dressed in full Pirate attire. Eyepatch raised and mirrored sun glasses on so I didn’t get busted for driving with one eye.
Having learnt from past encounters the less you say the sooner you get on yer way again I uttered “I’m doing a show up at the Preschool” and waved my arm in the general direction to emphasize I knew what I was talking about and actually new where the preschool were.
My mind then filled with rearranging my timings fer the day as I accomodated this search that was about to take place ten minutes before a show so I missed what he said next. I recall fragments “You’re not going to be selling drugs or guns to preschoolers” “You’re obviously not the sort of person we’re looking for” and “I thought you were going to get me for parking wrong” “No we wouldn’t do that”.
Just as suddenly I was left sitting alone again although three cars had filled the furthest angled parking bays. I wondered if any of them had foreign number plates and why didn’t the cops even look at them?….why did they pick on me?
Perhaps they passed on the other side of the road a few minutes earlier when I were sat in the front and took a Mylanta tab from the glove box and chewed it. Perhaps I climbed into the back just as they were passing from the other direction and they saw it as a suspiscous action. Who knows.
Jimi Hendrix floated through my mind “White collared conservative flashing down the street pointing their plastic finger at me. They’re hoping soon my kind is gonna drop and die but I’m gonna wave my freak flag high. High!”
This encounter prompted the question “Wonder what cops talk about after they sneak up on a car in a search for guns and drugs and come upon a cranky old bugger dressed in full pirate”