My husband, Rick, is a careful driver. I am too, but he’s on the extreme. He’ll sit at a stop sign for nearly a minute rather than pull out in front of anyone, and he’s good about obeying the speed limit. In fact, the first time he was pulled over for anything, it was because he was driving too slowly! That’s one reason it was ironic for him to be stopped for speeding when we were at a coastal resort several years ago.
Not long before we made the trip, Rick renewed his driver’s license. He must’ve been in a jovial mood, because he purposely opened his eyes and mouth wide, like he was really scared, when they took his picture. I was standing over to the side, realizing that’s the way to get DMV workers to laugh and smile. Rick explained to them that it’s probably the way he would look if the police pulled him over. He showed it to friends just for laughs, and I secretly hoped he’d keep it hidden most of the time.
But it did come in handy at the resort I mentioned earlier. The island is owned by its private citizens, and there are strict rules, including the unbelievably low speed limit of fifteen. We were in a hurry one day as we drove toward the resort’s exit, passing a few people next to a golf cart in a crook in the road. We’d barely gotten by the area when we spotted the white cart behind us. It was their traffic patrol!
Rick obediently pulled to the side of the road, and a rather young woman came over to our car, looking miffed. We had gone over the speed limit, but not by much. I held my breath as she revealed this to Rick in a brisk manner, asking for his license. She took it back to her vehicle, but soon returned, laughing.
“That’s just too cute! I can’t give you a ticket. I’ll let you go with a warning.”
I was amazed when she handed the license back to Rick and basically wished us a good day. That’s when I learned that a picture’s not only worth a thousand words–it’s worth the price of a traffic ticket!