Destin Vacay: Part 3, Identity Thief

Read Part 1 of this story here.
Read Part 2 of this story here.

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That last post was a little dramatic which is so unlike me. I swear to the Heavens above I’m not that dramatic!!!

Just kidding about that last exclamatory sentence. I’m really pretty chill but the thought of Aaron being hurt, really scared me. If you know me in real life or if you’re a faithful blog reader/social media follower, you know that I have a pretty good sense of humor about the crap that happens in life. Humor is what helps me get through the mess. It’s why I can appreciate Steel Magnolias and Crimes of the Heart so much. (Watch/read those asap if you haven’t!)

So when we saw flashing police lights in the rear view mirror after almost running out of gas and finding out Aaron’s bank was robbed at gun point, I couldn’t help but laugh at the irony. All we wanted to do is enjoy our beautiful beach vacation and we just kept being met with obstacles and stressors. It was to a point where it was now funny.

When Aaron entered the interstate after we stopped to eat lunch in Mobile, he was in the left-hand lane making his way up to speed. As the speedometer hit 60 Aaron goes, “I’m not even sure what the speed limit is.”

At that exact moment those words came out of his mouth we passed an Alabama cop sitting in the shoulder. Aaron jokingly quipped, “Watch him pull me over because I don’t know what the speed limit is.” We passed a sign that said the speed limit was 70 and at that moment, I kid you not, the cop pulled out from the shoulder.

He began weaving through traffic. We watched him in the mirror, thinking there was no way he was coming after us because we definitely hadn’t been going over 70. The cop made his way toward us and as soon as he could, he zipped in behind us and turned on his lights.

“What the…?” we both muttered under our breath.

We pulled over. As the policeman walked up, we gathered our information and rolled down our window to be met by a polite, smiling Alabama police officer.

“Nice new car. Did you folks just purchase it?”

“Yes sir.”

“It’s very nice. Good choice. The reason I pulled you over is because it’s Alabama policy to pull over every car with paper plates. Also, your window tint is considered illegal in Alabama. We need to be able to see inside the car.”

“….oh.” with raised eyebrows, was all that could come out of both of our mouths. What we were supposed to do about that, I had no idea. Not drive through Alabama?

“Where are you from?”

“Texas.”

“Where are you headed?”

“Destin. On vacation.”

“That’s a nice vacation. How long will you be there?”

“Until Monday.”

“That’s a good, long vacation you have planned. Well, I just pulled you over because it’s policy. If you give me your information I’ll just go run it real quick.”

My hand shook as I handed him our information. I don’t care how innocent you are, when’s cop pulls you over you’re nervous.

I still didn’t know if we were going to get a ticket or not but thought if we get a ticket, we get a ticket. I was pretty sure he was going to let us go, but there could be worse things than a ticket. Then I remembered the movie Identity Thief with Jason Bateman and Melissa McCarthy where she’s a con artist who steals Jason’s identity and gets him into trouble with the law by doing bad things under his identity. Then I began to wonder if there might be an arrest warrant out for my Jason character because some Melissa character has stolen my identity. I imagined the cop walking up to my window holstering his gun saying, “Ma’am please step out of the car. There’s a warrant out of your arrest for smuggling illegal jungle spiders into the country.”

To which I would reply, “Sir, if you only knew of my paralyzing fear of spiders you would know this has to be some sort of a mistake. Go ahead, pick up a spider, put it in my face and see what happens.”

Then I would go to jail for illegal spider smugglery and all of my fellow prison inmates would nickname me “Tarantula.”

As we sat there for ten minutes while he ran our information through the system I couldn’t stop laughing. One, because of the ridiculous identity thief scenario running through my head. Two, because I felt like National Lampoon’s; All I wanted was to go on vacation and we couldn’t get there without some sort of trouble. Three kinds of trouble – gas trouble, hold up trouble, illegal window tint trouble.

The irony was too much.

We saw him walk back up behind our car. I stifled my chuckles so as not be disrespectful or conspicuous. I genuinely considered telling the cop, “You would NOT believe the day we’ve had.” and go into detail about the entire, ridiculous story.

But then I remembered he’s a cop and he probably sees a lot grit like some Clint Eastwood movie character. I imagined after I would tell him our story he would come back with something like, “I shot a man today. Beat that.” and then I would feel really crappy about making a big deal about the trouble we’ve been through getting to a beach. How whiny does that sound?

So I kept to myself and smiled politely when he handed me our information. He told us we were free to go and to enjoy our vacation. He was sweet. Like a grandpa. It made me smile. And that smile helped smooth over all the mess that had happened.

We pulled away from the shoulder, finally on our way to Destin and its beautiful white beaches to spend the next four days doing nothing but relaxing and eating an embarrassing amount of fresh seafood.

***

Okay, we finally made it through all the mess of driving to Destin. Come back tomorrow and I promise to have pretty pictures and all the good details about our vacation!

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