Exiting the bridge yesterday, we watched a patrol car file into traffic, lights spinning round.
“Ooh... someone’s gonna get it,” Brad and I agreed conspiratorially. “But who?”
The cop car pulled ahead casually, and civilians changed lanes to make room, but he didn’t seem to be after any one of them.
Why wasn’t he speeding up? Didn’t he need to speed up? If he’d seen someone driving recklessly, wasn’t he going to lose them if he didn’t go any faster?!
It was puzzling.
And then he swerved. Deeply. First to the left, then to the right. Not once, not twice, but repeatedly, over and over. Cars on all sides of him were being pushed aside as everyone frantically tried to make sense of his erratic behavior. Like a ten-year-old boy, weaving surreptitiously on a dirt bike, he wove back and forth across the highway. Everyone fell back. There was a palpable question mark floating above the arena of cars now corralled behind him.
What the hell was going on?!
Was he drunk? Were we witness to a stolen car?
“We’ve gotta get out of here,” Brad said.
Our off-ramp was less than a mile away, but getting there was starting to look questionable.
Another on-ramp was merging to the left of us.
Swinging wildly across five lanes, he cut off the oncoming traffic and began zigzagging back and forth across the entire spans of overpass.
OK, we were becoming very curious. There had to be something outrageous going on. Was the freeway shut down up ahead? Had there been a major accident? A wild police chase? Why didn’t he have back-up? For as far as the eye could see, there didn’t seem to be a problem. Glancing in the rearview mirror however, there was traffic for miles behind.
“Well, whatever it is,” I said to Brad, “I’m glad to be up here. I’d hate to be trying to get off the bridge right about now.”
We could see our off-ramp, and there were blinking lights illuminating from the shoulder.
“Great!” We exclaimed in unison. “It’s blocking our exit!”
I began mapping out an alternate plan.
As we approached our destination, the police car pulled up onto the shoulder, and then, Horror upon Horrors...!
There was a tow truck. With a tow truck mechanic. Changing a flat tire.