Back to the bunny.
I stopped short of the animal and took a better look. A bunny for sure. Yes, the nose was doing that rabbit thing. It appeared clean, docile, like someone’s pet.
The radio was silent, the shift had turned calm for the time being. I grab the car radio. “I will be 11-94 (pedestrian stop) on what appears to be a domesticated bunny. Code 4..” Periodic humor, a bit of irreverence (as long as it is well timed) is acceptable, I think.
But.. I hadn’t formulated a plan. There was me stopped in the roadway, bent over in front of my patrol car’s headlamps, looking at a bunny, the bunny looking at me.
It wasn’t long before two of my team members showed up. They too stopped their cars, but safely along the curb. Both walked slowly towards me.
“Sarge, what are you going to do?”, says the first. “Watch out, that thing may have fleas or something”, says the second. They stand side by side, neither moving closer. Now that I think of it, I must have been a sight. I was bent over, arms outstretched as if the bunny would hop over to me and into my arms.
“If only I had a box or something, I could put it in and take it to the shelter.” I was thinking out loud again. As soon as I wish for a box, a box comes into focus. Berkeleyans are notorious for putting household items in front of their homes with Free signs. Someone else’s trash… Awww, forget it. That is another post.
I dash over the sidewalk and dump a box of books into a pile. I run back to the trunk of the car to fetch a grocery sized paper bag, then back to someone’s pet.
With very little style or grace, I somehow scoop and slide the bunny into the box, but not before a ridiculous zig zag hop chase a half block or so. The officers are in the same spot. You think this is some spectator sport? I actually hadn’t asked them to help and I know they had my back.
When I get to the shelter, I place the floppy eared rescue into one of the night deposit boxes.
I was pleased when it hopped in, went straight to the water bottle to drink. Yup, some family is missing this animal companion. It is too comfortable in the crate.
The next day in briefing, a team member pops in a VHS tape and pushes play. Not before he says, “You always tell us nothing is Code 4…” It’s the killer rabbit scene from Monty Phython and the Holy Grail. The team is laughing. “Sarge, I mean, you know… Anything can happen out there. You said it yourself.”
They are listening. I laugh with them and at myself.