Our first time experiencing events, situations or feelings often leave us with unforgettable tales to tell. Little Johnny was travelling to a different province for the first time. It was his longest journey ever made and he was proud he had his hero by him. His dad. The man he learnt everything from. He was enjoying every bit of the trip… the hill, deep valleys, even the neat attires of the police men at the checkpoints along the road.
When they got to different checkpoints, the driver just like the others will drive past the checkpoint and park away from the road. Then he would run back to the police officer with a file that contained the car documents. In most checkpoints the officers he saw had pot bellies and unfriendly looks. He had heard ugly things being said about them but he was impressed by the efficiency of the officers. They checked the documents very fast and in just a matter of seconds at every checkpoint, they would be on their way. He felt glad their driver had everything in check because they had not been delayed anywhere unlike a few drivers he had seen quarrel with the police men along the road.
After about an hour’s drive they got to another police checkpoint and many passengers stepped off the bus to relieve themselves. Young Johnny stepped down too. Not to relieve himself but to satisfy his curiosity. As he looked at the que of drivers waiting to have their documents checked, he noticed something. The police officer’s pocket bulged like frog eyes as his hefty hands kept going in and out of them. He moved closer to see what he was doing. He noticed theat the officer didn’t verify a single document. He would flip through one or two papers, send his hand in then out of his pocket, then get the next document. After some moments of careful observation, he was convinced that banknotes were changing hands. Wasn’t that wrong?
He could hear the officer’s voice as he scolded drivers that didn’t have ‘complete’ documents. It was coarse like those of the men he saw coming out of beer parlours. He peered into the car by which the police man stood. Another pot-bellied man was seating in it, probably the boss. He had a whistle in his mouth which he blew when a vehicle passed by the road.
When they got into the bus to continue the trip, everyone seemed ok as before. Not Johnny. He turned to his father who sat by him and asked;
‘Dad, did you see what the police officer was doing at the checkpoint? he wasn’t checking any documents’. He gave him a warm pat on the back and said: ‘if checks were to be done, we wouldn’t have gone half our journey by now.’
So his dad was actually saying there was nothing wrong with all that. For once in his life he felt like his father was wrong. More questions kept streaming into his mind and he was determined to get answers. He lay his head on his dad’s laps and patiently waited for their bus to arrive the next checkpoint.
A father is a man who expects his son to be as good a man as he meant to be. – Frank A. Clark