This is a new kind of post I write. I always love Rob’s Tidbit Tuesdays from http://weight2lose2013.wordpress.com . He inspired me to this post. I recently remembered a story from last April.
I spent some days in California and offered my friend to pick up his daughter from soccer training. No problem! I have my GPS and I love driving over the highways. But sometimes I misunderstand the lovely lady. It was a huge traffic in those evening hours and I missed the exit. I left the highway and entered on the other side again. I noticed a motorcycle right behind me but was glued to the GPS in order to not get lost again – traffic was really crazy. If you ever drove over a six laned highway between exits and entries during rush hour you know how confusing this can be; most of all when you don’t know where to go. I had to change lanes, looked into the mirror and did not see the bike anymore. I thought it might have passed by and changed the lane. OMG!!! I heard a loud and angry honk and right after I saw blue and red lights flashing. The motorcycle must have been right next to me and … it was a police vehicle… I managed to cut of a police officer. Great job!
I couldn’t believe this was happening. I had no idea what would follow. My first contact with a police officer in the US. I turned over and stopped the car. At least I knew I had to stay in the car. The officer was not very happy when he appeared at the window. I was so scared I almost had no voice. I apologized a thousand times and simply was so glad I did not hit him. Well, that thought overwhelmed me. Then the officer asked for my driver’s license. The moment he held it in hands was the time he regretted that he had stopped me. Mr. Mendez, never seen a driver’s license from the Principality of Liechtenstein before? Everything was in German and the data are in a different order. He also must have cursed himself several times when I gave him my weight and size, since it was in the metric system…. But we made it. In the end we even made jokes about the whole situation. But it did not prevent me from getting a ticket. That was when my odyssey started.
I am not used to that system. I was supposed to get a letter in which I would have been asked to pay the bail or go to court at the date shown on the ticket. I never got a letter. The officer even considered they won’t send it. But the problem was, that the court appointment was serious. Since I live 5’600 miles away I can’t simply show up. Also I could not pay the bail since there was no amount and no pay option on the ticket. The ticket said I could see my whole case online. But to enter my case I needed a case number which is not on the ticket but on the letter I never got. I even could not call the OC courts from over here. You can only call those 1800 numbers from inside the US… I guess you get my dilemma. In the end I contacted the Austrian embassy in Los Angeles and they recommended a lawyer. They found out the number and delivered all the information o me. That way I paid everything and at the same time the court appointment was canceled. I was so relieved. I was afraid that otherwise I would be arrested right away when entering the States the next time. I visited the USA two more times last year and I took along all the confirmations about my paid bail – just for sure.
I still remember the last sentence officer Justin Mendez said to me: “Be careful and look over your shoulder, honey!” I definitely learned that.
In Love and Light