If the drivers of this procession allow one car length between vehicles, the entire parade stretches 1,152 feet. That's one thousand, one hundred and fifty two feet of rolling Christian mourners who are all on their best behavior. Now since the average man is doing good to find his way home every night, and since no one has ever been taught how to drive in a funeral procession... am I the only one to see a disaster in the making here?
Everyone managed to get out of the Bethany parking lot without bending any fenders and without allowing any gaps in the procession wider than, oh I don't know... call it three car lengths. Wide enough so that some moke waiting at a green light will not bother waiting around to see if there's more procession before hammering the throttle and getting on about his oh-so-important big hurry.
We head West on Alexis from Flanders, and that first turn is where the fun starts. You see, in the bad old days (1965, for instance) there wasn't any traffic light at Flanders and Alexis. In fact, back in the old days anyone heading West on Alexis Road had a solid two mile stretch of highway with no traffic lights, starting at Secor and maybe ending at Whiteford, unless you timed it right and made the light at Whiteford and Alexis. Flanders was just an insignificant cross street.
Which averaged one accident per week during the summer, and these were all injury accidents.
Old habits die hard, and when a traffic light was finally installed at Flanders and Alexis the accidents began to decrease and the panic stops and moving violations increased until things sort of stabilized. So today, when the irate drivers on Alexis are having their circuit boards shorted out by staring at a green light and a funeral procession, the right foot wants to win the argument and cut through the line. Because I'm in a hurry. I need to go! See?
About three blocks Southbound on Talmadge I see a Lucas County Deputy Sheriff finishing up a call at an abandoned home. She's standing next to her patrol car watching the parade with a Holy Moley look. Fortunately for all of us, the deputy took some initiative and ran interference for our wagon train all the way to the cemetery, keeping cretins, horn testers and other mental midgets in check. It's just so amazing to me how quiet and polite people are when the police are present.
I didn't get the lady deputy's license number or photo, which is kind of a shame. She is a handsome woman with long blond hair in her middle twenties, about five foot six, medium build. I'll send some email to the Lucas County Sheriff and see if it finds the right officer. In the meantime, here is my official thanks to the blond deputy, along with a tip of the old fedora and a hoist of my afternoon bourbon glass.