Tuesday, September 20, 2005

All I Wanted Was A Nap

A couple of Fridays ago, I had gotten home from my study group a lot earlier than planned and decided to pick everyone up. The kids were walking home from school. I first saw Sonia about 3 houses away from home, walking with a few friends. Jarod was another 3 houses back swinging a stick around. Whitney was poking along about half a block behind Jarod. She was with 2 other kids.

I pulled up near each and told them to get in so we could go pick up their mom from the high school. I have done this many times before. It really isn't a big deal, but usually the kids ask if we can drive their friends home too. A lot of kids walk home along our street. I said "no" because we weren't going straight home. Off to the high school!

It really isn't that far for her to walk, but I thought I'd pick mollo up to make her day a bit easier. We managed to get there about 2 minutes before she walked out.

Then we went to the house of one of the kids' friends and picked up one more. Off to our house for a little Friday fun!

I had spent about 25 minutes driving to make the whole circuit.

I had had a long week and my early arrival actually provided an opportunity to make up a bit of lost sleep. I decided that I would take a nap. I usually don't do naps. It messes with my schedule. But before I could execute my plan, there was a knock at the door.

One of Bryan's finest was standing on my doorstep with our apartment manager and one of the neighborhood kids my children play with and go to school with. The officer introduced himself and said he was looking for Whitney. It's very strange to hear the police officer standing at your door asking for your 5 year old daughter. He went on to explain that one of the girls walking home with Whitney saw her get into a strange van on the side of the road. She told her grandmother, who in turn talked to the manager and finally called 911.

At this point I knew that this was a misunderstanding, but I was surprised since this little girl was over at our house almost more than at her own house. She knows me and I expected that she would recognize our van since it is parked about 20 feet from my front door. When I had picked Whitney up, I waved to her.

I said, "No, I have her. I picked her up myself." Then I called her out of the bedroom. "This is Whitney. She's fine. I have her. I picked her up in my van. It's the same van I always drive," (if I am driving anything on 4-wheels.)

BPD had nearly a dozen officers looking for my daughter and my "mysterious white van" for about 45 minutes. Well, I pointed to my van and told him that was the van in question and I was the man.

I am glad to have concerned neighbors. I am just embarrassed that I was not recognizable in my van. Maybe next time I'll just shuttle back and forth on my motorcycle and pick up the kids. Just don't tell their Grandma. ;)

1 comment: