It is Wednesday morning. The sun has been up for some time and the temperature is climbing, validating the weather forecaster’s prediction of a beautiful spring day. My shifts are screwed up this week. I worked night shift the previous day and now I am working a day shift alone. During the hours in between, I have been on-call with the headquarters’ dispatch center. My first posting to a three-man rural detachment has taken me by surprise. I am a city boy, born and raised, and the transition from paved highways to gravel roads is somewhat of a challenge. Continue reading Temper Temper
I was seized by the panic in her eyes. There she was, twenty feet in front of me, drowning in three feet of water. Seemingly impossible, it took me a few extra seconds to react; to jump from my lifeguard chair five feet above the surface of our community outdoor swimming pool and leaped toward her from the edge of the tiled pool deck. Continue reading Genesis
Barry and I were in the process of trying to arrest an angry and flailing female juvenile in the parking lot when the dance ended and the participants streamed out from the community hall. Fuelled by alcohol, several males took exception to our efforts and attempted to obstruct our progress of placing her into the back seat of the police Chevrolet Suburban. Continue reading Lights Out
It’s 9:48 am on a bright sunny day in July, 1980 in the northern Manitoba town of Wabowden. Home to about 500 residents at that time, Wabowden was also the regional office of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the largest whistle stop for the Canadian National Railway travelling between The Pas and Thompson. Normally if I was patrolling in town, I would park my police car alongside the tracks as a train moved slowly into the station. I enjoyed watching the faces of tourists staring out of the train car windows, curious as to why this specific town was located in the middle of seemingly barren land. But today, I was a waiting passenger for the scheduled northbound stop at 9:52 am. Continue reading Patrol Cabin Cookbook
It was nine o’clock on an evening in late October and darkness had long since fallen on our normally sleepy town. Earlier, a full moon and thousands of stars had provided natural light to a section of town that comprised the business district; a car repair shop, the municipal hall, the post office, the bank, a general store and a car dealership. It was a mixture of private businesses and government institutions that were all considered valuable to the integrity of the town; indeed the region. Continue reading Chasing Rabbits
A noise woke him from his sleep. It was after midnight and the house was dark except for a shadow of a light somewhere downstairs. The noise was a shadow as well, of someone doing something in a quiet way, so as not to disturb. But this subtle noise was what woke the man, likely faster than a car horn blaring from blocks away. This was his house; he was attuned to its voice. Continue reading CRUMBS
April 25th; my birthday. I opened my eyes to my 65th year of living a wonderful life. Lying in bed, not yet stirring, I looked out through my fifth storey window; the reward and magic of my life was apparent in the things I saw. Below me, bordering the river, barren trees stood waiting for that first brush of warm weather, protecting their leafy buds until completely sure that winter’s frosty hand had been withdrawn. Above, a flock of gulls soared majestically, riding the thermal currents formed from newly heated patches of dark earth uncovered by the receding ice and snow. In between, dark and dusty buildings awoke and stretched, unburdened by the many months of cold, and ice, and snow; elements that would have killed any entity more human than they, over the same period of time. And stretch they did, turning lifelike before my eyes. One resembled a dog, no, was a dog, rising and stretching from his sleep on a soft white pillow.