I don't think of myself as leading a particularly stressful or overburdened life these days ... but on August 6, 2014 - right around midnight - as i was driving back to the Cape from Boston where I'd been at a Hiroshima Day Memorial Rally, and then watched my beautiful son Sam play in a basketball game with all ex college players, and then he and I went out for dinner, and I’d been up since before 4AM getting some law work and contracts for Joy my partner done before driving the 2 hours into Boston - and now, driving the 2 hours back after a 20 hour day, well truthfully, I was more than half asleep at the wheel weaving between lanes on the interstate traveling at 65 mph when the state police officer with the flashing insistent lights pulled me over.
What he found upon shining his flashlight into my car was a bearded old man with his belt loosened and pants unzipped (taking the pressure off my stomach seated in a car after a big dinner), his shoes off, driving a old station wagon filled with signs about stopping nuclear power, as well as ropes, tools, knives, matches, and tape on the seat beside me.
"Look at you from my perspective," he said when I asked why he was further detaining/questioning me after I told him I hadn't had so much as a sip of alcohol (I hadn't), followed his finger with my eyes without moving my head, oh so competently recited the alphabet, and asked for my license and registration back.
"Tell you what," he said, "there's a rest area up a quarter mile, I'm gonna follow you. If you can drive there straight you're gonna pull over and sleep three or four hours and there'll be no more problems for you from me this night. But if you weave once, or I come by on patrol in less than three hours from now and your car is not there I'm coming after you ... and you'll be spending the rest of the night in my 'house' not yours."
I never knew I could sleep so soundly while detained in my car. Joy thinks he saved my life … and maybe someone else's. I am impressed by his discretion and judgment.