Sunday, November 29, 2009

Rest in Peace Brothers.

All police officers mourn along with Lakewood, Washington P.D. Our hearts go out to our brothers, our heroes. Rest in Peace

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Do your own work.

There are lots of things a young copper has to learn that is not taught in the academy and has to be learned by experience. One very important thing to be learned is, to keep some pooch copper from stealing a good arrest you gotta do your own paper work. It happens to young officers all the time.

A young copper and his partner were checking a burglar alarm at a school late one night and noticed an open window. They climbed in and began to do a room by room search. They were alerted by noise coming from the main office. They sneaked into the room and surprised a burglar prying open a desk drawer. The offender wisely surrendered.

The young officers were FNG's and didn't have much experience in processing a felony pinch. They called in two of the older guys who worked a crime car in plain clothes and asked for help with the arrest. They figured they would share the credit and gain some knowledge at the same time.

Well you can guess what happened. By the time the paperwork was done the young coppers weren't even on the scene except for transporting the offender. The young coppers realized they had let a good pinch get taken from them. There was no recourse, the sergeant shrugged and said "ya gotta learn to do your own work guys". Good street coppers are very competitive and hustle to get the good arrest but only assholes steal them from other policemen. It was a valuable lesson the young guys learned that day.

Another incident was even worse. A man intent on suicide was sitting on the roof ledge of a five story building. A friend was trying to talk him down. Two big city coppers and a fireman went up in a FD snorkel bucket at the rear of the building. Quietly, they approached the man and grabbed him from the ledge. The man began fighting and trying to go over the ledge. He was wrestled from the roof and onto the bucket. He fought all the way down. The man was admitted to the psych ward of the hospital and the coppers were recommended for a life saving award for their heroism.

A month or so later at the monthly awards ceremony, (lots of heroic stuff going on in the big city) the presenter called out three names for the award. The two officers and the fireman right? Guess again! The Beat officer that had written up the incident had included himself as part of the save. He posed with the officers as if he had earned the medal. It was embarrassing. His wife was smiling so proudly at him though that it was better to leave it be.

These incidents are good examples of why coppers should do their own work especially if you want it done right.

The grand finale to the big city copper's middle east vacation was a visit to Petra and the Dead Sea. This was actually considered part of the Holy Land just not the christian part of it.

Petra was a fascinating archeologic wonder. Several ancient buildings carved into the mountains were featured in one of the Indiana Jones movies. The tour guide played a recording of the IJ theme song as we approached the sight. (Cheesy dramatics, no matter where you go.)

The Dead Sea was a marvel to see. It is 200 meters below sea level and extremely salty. Nothing grows in the water. It felt caustic and any scratches or open skin suffered for it. The mud baths were smelly but supposedly have healing properties.

The pillar of salt of Lot's wife and her camel were fun to see. (Too bad the camel looked back too)
This is obviously a brief recap of an enormous adventure and I know I haven't done justice to a great trip but it was a whirlwind tour with not much time to really appreciate it all.

Returning to the USA was actually a relief. Some areas especially near the airport at Amman,Jordan were definitely highly secured. Armored vehicles with .50 caliber machineguns mounted sat at various intersections.
After a long 15 hour flight, it was good to get home.
Getting back to work will be a chore though, A copper can get used to a life of leisure and travel.

Friday, November 6, 2009

We traveled along the coast of the arabian gulf stopping in Sharjah to pick up two more adventurers, a young female french socialist and an older german tourist. The ride to the border of Oman took us through several towns and villages. Several times we had to stop for the livestock in the roadway. Our driver says the goats and cows know where they live and eventually make their way home. Saves the need for a shepherd, I guess.

We arrived at the border between Oman and the UAE. It was easy to pass through and exit the UAE once we provided the officials with the fee and our passports. We repeated the procedure at the entry side into Oman. The scenery didn't change much, desert and mountains to one side and the blue waters of the gulf of Oman. After passing through more fishing villages we arrived at a small cove where a few Dhows were wharfed. We boarded ours and settled in for a casual cruise into the fiords that knifed into the mountains.

We sailed through the fiords stopping at islands and villages. We saw ruins of a British fort on Telegraph Island. Another ruin was of a portugese fort long abandoned. The boat stopped in a cove for lunch and snorkeling. Lunch was typical Omani food, fish, rice, a soup, sweet tea and flat bread. It was delicious.

The dhows were constantly followed by dolphins that swam and played around racing through the wake of the boat. It was late in the afternoon and nearing dusk when we finally docked and headed back to the city.

The adventure to the middle east continued to get better. Our next stop was to travel to Jordan and see the Holy Land from the West Bank of the Dead Sea.

Monday, November 2, 2009

On vacation...

What an adventure!

The non stop flight from the big city to Abu Dhabi should have taken 15 hours at most. But NOOOOOOOO! Some poor sap got sick somewhere approaching Greece. Did the flight continue to Athens maybe? No the pilot turned the plane around and backtracked to Milan, Italy. Wow! Italy. They at least opened the doors so we could breath some fresh air as we sat on the tarmac for four hours. So when you hear a big city copper brag about when "I was in Milan...." you can call him on it. The flight finally made it to Abu Dhabi at one in the morning, five hours behind schedule.

Normally, the big city copper is all about adventuring. The ability to adapt and improvise is one of my prized assets but after eight hours or so the "quaintness" faded fast. The plane was filled to capacity. The seats in coach were cramped and uncomfortable. There were too many squalling babies. The whole thing began to look and feel like the chicken and goat buses I've ridden. You know the ones you see in the third world documentaries. Mercifully, passing through customs and immigration was a breeze and the hour's drive to Dubai was uneventful.

The next day was spent at the pool, enjoying my grandkids, and napping. (to fight off the jet lag) Tomorrow, the adventure continues. A boat ride through the straits of Hormuz and into the country of Oman is the planned tour.

I'll let you know how it went. I will hopefully impress you with some good photos too but that will have to wait till we return.

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