column 11 A David Crosby Moment


A bang on the Ford van woke us up in the middle of the night. Two policemen directed a glaring searchlight at us. "Would you please step outside, sir?"
We had just been to visit David and Deborah, an American couple we had met in the Blue Note Jazz Club in New York. We had left them at half past eleven and had decided to park at the nearest shopping mall. Before we went to sleep we freshened up at the Waffle House, an establishment which remains open for twenty-four hours. After that we parked the Ford van at the back.
"Where are you from and are you musicians?"
I told him we were from the Netherlands and we were too tired to drive any further. "We aren't musicians, just teachers on a long holiday."
"If I were you, I wouldn't leave that keyboard on the driver's seat because it looks too inviting."
I was in my tee-shirt and bare feet. I didn't dare to move as I was afraid that the policemen would find that suspicious.
"May I see your papers?" This was the moment that I had to put my trainers on. Anita knew exactly where her passport was but I had forgotten what I had done with mine and this wasn't the time to go looking for it. But my driver's licence was good enough. More than thirty percent of Americans don't possess a passport, so a drivers licence is often the document used for identification. Everything was OK. "I'm responsible for safety in this area, that's why we have to check."
I felt reassured, but Anita had the feeling we were experiencing one of those 'David Crosby moments'
With a "Goodnight and be careful," the policemen drove off.