The puppy was just the cutest thing, with it's luxuriant silky black fur. It's owner said, "Sure you can pick up my dog and pet him. His name is Georgie."
As she held him and stroked his head she said, "My boyfriend is going to want a puppy just like him, when I tell him about this little darling."
"Yeah, he's cute and he knows it.", commented the owner.
The owner was an older man. He was a little on the paunchy side, with brown greying hair, and a very close shave. She was young, a year or 2 out of college, and quite attractive. They sat about 3 feet apart on one of the many benches and talked about dogs for around 20 minutes when the man casually asked her what she did. She replied she was a police officer. The man said, "I've got 3 drug dealers for you."
"Are these drug dealers in Battle Creek?", she asked. "Because if they are, you'd want to take this to the Battle Creek Police Department. I'm a state trouper, and I could really only do something if you have their license plate numbers."
"But you do have jurisdiction statewide don't you?", asked the man.
"Well, yes, but I mostly do traffic, things like speeding and equipment violations. I only work my own patrol area."
She asked if she could take a photo of the puppy. The man said sure. When she set him down and took his photo, the man asked if she'd mind sending the photo of the puppy to somebodies email. He gave her the email address, and she sent it. A couple more dog park people came up and took pictures.
"You just sent that picture to my lawyer. He's an old college pal who handles my affairs for free. His firm has offices in The Renaissance Center, they exclusively do foreclosures. All their clients are banks."
Then the subject changed. They talked about trucks, motor carrier enforcement, and police in general for another 45 minutes, all the while she stroked the sleeping puppy in her lap. The man told her of being beaten up in the back seat of a squad car, and of a friend he was sure the Ann Arbor police had murdered 30 years earlier. He didn't tell her that his father had owned an Ann Arbor detective for a time when he was a teenager. He didn't refer to police officers as police officers, they were cops and it was pretty obvious that he didn't like police officers in general.
He asked her if she needed a college education to be a state trouper, she said a 2 year program was the requirement, but she had a BA in Criminal Justice. Then he asked her how she came to study that. Did she go to college wanting to be a state trouper?
"No, it's a first job. We just got a raise, the first one in 7 years. The only step up, really, is to sergeant, and that's not much of a raise, only about $5,000 a year. We all get paid the same, a little under $40,000 a year."
"Where did you go?", he asked.
"Montana State, in Bozeman. It's a really good school. I thought about staying out there, but all my family is here. I'm from Dexter."
"What prompted you to choose that school?", he asked.
"They chose me, I had a track scholarship", she said, "I ran the mile and 1500".
The man took off his right shoe and pointed at the flattest foot she'd ever seen. "I was the slowest runner on the wrestling team. Even the heavy weight could run faster than I could. I lost in the finals of the first wrestling tournament I ever competed in to a kid from Dexter. I'm from Ann Arbor. I've worked in Dexter. I went through Dexter many many times on the way to Portage Lake as a kid. They originally wanted to site the University of Michigan in Dexter, but Judge Dexter said he wouldn't allow his town to be ruined by the University of Michigan so they sited it in Ann Arbor instead. Mighty Michigan wouldn't let me in, but I wanted a degree in horticulture anyway, so I went to Moo U. I forgot to leave town when I graduated. Know what happens to people who forget to leave town? They wind up driving a cab."
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