The Little Girl Who Lives Down The Lane - Part 3

The Little Girl Who Lives Down The Lane
By Barbara Lynn Terry

Chapter 5 - Still at the block party.

With the Carruthers in jail, and the officers are back on doing their security, the block party was going stronger than ever. There were a few out of towners that wanted to know if they could get in to have a little fun. They were told no, because this was a block party only for the townspeople.

“Wait!” David Adams exclaimed. “Are you saying that this is a private carnival?”

Greg Olsen, a police officer for Pine Forest asked the man his name.

“David Adams.”

“What is your date of birth?”

“Why do want to know, flatfoot?”

“Because, Mr. Adams, I need to know the names and birth dates of all outsiders who want to attend our town block party. Now, let ne take a wild stab in the dark, here, and I will bet you are from Detroit.”

“Yeah, I am. I came to see my friend, Jonah Carruthers and his son, David.”

“Visiting hours have just started. If you go to this address, you tell the sergeant on duty that you want to see Jonah. David is being held as a juvemile delinquent and only family is allowed to see him. But you can visit Jonah.”

“Why were they arrested?”

“Because they broke the law by committing felonies. Now, this conversation is over. Either go and visit your friend, or go back to Detroit. We don’t like troublemakers here.”

“You haven’t seen trouble, yet. But, you will.”

“Is that a threat, sir?”

“No, that is a promise.”

“Just a moment, sir. Will you please step on this side of barricade?”

Greg Olsen spoke in to his hand held radio.

“364 to 566.”

“566, go ahead 364.”

“Would you please come to the barricade?”

“I am on the way, 364.”

Steve Hastings made his way to the barricade. When he got there, Greg took him aside, and told him what was going on.

“Okay, Greg. I think that maybe he should spend the night for … what would be a good charge? Disorderly conduct is just a slap on the wrist.”

“How about drunk and disorderly?” Greg asked his co-worker.

“How about drunk and obstructing an officer. He wants to visit his friend Jonah Carruthers, we will let him.”

“Good idea, Steve, this way he will have to go before the judge on Monday.”

“Mr. Adams,” Steve spoke directly to David. “What is your date of birth?”

“September 5, 1980. Why do you ask?”
“Because Mr. David Adams, you areunder arrest for being intoxicated in public and obstructing an officer. You will find out, sir, that this is a law abiding town. I have already sent a fax to the Detroit police department. They have put a felony hold on Jonah Wilson Carruthers, for numerous felonies committed there. I wonder what kind of hold they will place on you?”

David Adams started to run, only to be stopped by Steve, who actually grabbed the back of David Adams’ shirt.

“Now, Mr. Adams, that was not smart, because now you are also being charged with resisting arrest. Let’s go, I have a taxi already waiting.”

Steve put David Adams in the back seat of his squad, and raised the shield separating the driver from the prisoner. Steve drove David to the jail and had him booked. Then, as the jailor was taking David to a cell, Steve told him to have a good night. Steve then returned to the block party.

There was a lot happening here in Pine Forest, Addison county, small town America. But Steve Hastings had a nagging suspicion in the back of his mind. Steve went to the squad room to look at the wanted posters to see if Jonah Wilson Carruthers and David Adams were wanted for anything. He ran their names and birth dates and then added they were from Detroit, Michigan.

After a while, Steve got his answers. Jonah Wilson Carrtuhers was wanted for Murder in Detroit, Wayne County, Michigan. David Adams was wanted for Burglary, armed robbery and injury by conduct regardless of life. Steve kind of chuckled to himself, because it looked as though Jonah Carruthers and David Adams would be a guest in the Addison County jail after their court appearances.

After getting his answers, Steve went back to the block party. With all that has happened, you would think it was late afternoon, but it was only three thirty. Dinner would be served picnic style, and the rides would go to midnight. Then they would start right away at eight o’clock in the morning.

As Steve got back to the block party, he found Jimmy Shepard and Jay Simons talking to each other.

“Don’t worry, Jay, as long as I am here, I will help take care of the bullies. If you want, we can be friends.”

“I would like that, thank you.”

Steve went over by the soft drink tent.

“Hi, how is youir eye, Jay?”

“It’s all right, officer Hastings. Jimmy wants to be one of my friends.”

“I don’t see a problem with that. You are friends with all of the other children on Ginger Lane.”

“Officer … Hastings, is it? Jimmy asked kind of stammering. “I told Jay that I would help take care of any bullies that came on the lane. I live here, now, so there is no reason why I can’t help keep my neighborhood safe.”

“Thank you, Jimmy. That is very insightful. We can’t always be here on the lane, but we do through here quite often. So, if you have something to tell us, we will appreciate it very much.

“Officer Hasting,” Jay added. “Jimmy said when that boy hit me, that he would get together with the other boys on the lane, and help protect those wouldn’t protect themselves.”

“Yes, officer Hastings. We moved here from Saginaw. Saginaw for the most part is a decent town, but there are sections that are more violent than others. When you live in the big city, you get used to gangs and drive by shootings. But, while all of that is going on, we have what we call the neighborhood block watch.

“That is where we kind of look out of our windows, without being obvious, to see what is going on. If we see something illegal, we call the police. We don’t get involved, except to testify in court, if we have to.”
“That sounds like what we need here. I will tell you what, Jimmy, I will bring this up to our public relations department, and have them submit it to the city council. We could definitely use a block watch program here. Ginger Lane is the last street in the city limits, before the speed limit goes up to sixty miles per hour. I’m going to make rounds, now, to see if everything is quiet.

“One thing I always liked about the people of Pine Forest; they are orderly and peaceful. That is why we walk around like we do. There are ten officers here, and none of us are very far away from any trouble that may or may start. The boy that hit you, Jay, his father had a visitor. We arrested him for a number of misdemeanors, then I found out that they are both wanted in Detroit for felonies. They will go away for a long, long time.”

“Officer Hasting,” Jimmy was saying. “I will get with the other boys on the lane to watch, too. We won’t get involved by facing the people, but, we will call your department, so you can come and see what we see.”

“Sounds good Jimmy. I will be back shortly.”

Jimmy stayed with Jay at the soft drink tent, to help with the refreshments. The festival was going strong, the rides donated all of the money they took in for the Mrs. Mae Harkins Memorial Scholarship Fund. The owners of the carnival believed in furthering a young person’s education. The people of Pine Forest all knew Mrs Mae Harkins, and there wasn’t a bad thing any of them could say about her.

She baby sat for just about everyone in town. She helped where ever and when ever she could. There was one time she had pneumonia, and the people of Pine Forest took turns taking care of her. No, not one person in Pine Forest could say anything bad about her.

Because of her, this festival, everybody called a block party, was set up in her honor. At first, there was no carnival, just a block party with local live bands. It was later that the mayor of Pine Forest declared this to be the Mrs. Mae Harkins Memorial Scholarship Fund, and that all monies taken would be put toward that scholarship. If the festival didn’t take in enough for the scholarship, the Town of Pine Forest would put in the remaining balance.

That is why the Pine Forest police department was so adamant about zero tolerance for any violence. They felt that any kind of violence would be an insult to the integrity of the festival, which was for a very good cause, honoring a very well respected lady.

Steve Hastings, Tony Palmetti Greg Olsen and the other officers made sure that integrity was protected. It was mainly outsiders that
caused all the trouble. Like with the father and son Carruthers and David Adams. As Steve Hastings made his way around the six blocks that made up Ginger Lane, he was constantly darting his eyes from one place to the next, to make sure that there was no trouble, or, if there was, he could be on top of it almost immediately.

Kathy, Francine, and Tanya went over by Jimmy and Jay.

“Hey, you two,” Francine said, cheerfully.

“Hey right back,” Jimmy was quick to answer.

“How is the soft drink business?” Asked Kathy.

“Good. We have about forty dollars so far. But, like dad and mom keep saying, ‘the day is young, yet’.”

“Well, we’re off for a few more rides. Would you like to join us, Jimmy?”

“No, but I think Jay might want to go on a few rides. I will stay here and take care of the tent.”

“Jay, would you like to go an a few rides?”

“Yes, Kathy, I would.”

“Well, then, let’s go.”

Jay joined Kathy, Darlene, Francine and Tanya on the midway. The first ride Jay wanted to go on was, the Space Rocket. This was a ride where a rocket shaped vehicle was suspended outward by huge metal beams. The ride went around like it was in orbit, then it went up and down like a roller coaster.

When the ride was over, Jay was walking like he had a few too many. The three girls had to steady him, or he would fall. Jay finally regained the use of his legs, and decided the next ride should be the bumper cars. They had fun crashing in to each other like they were at a demolition derby. They had fun bumping in to the cars as well. When the ride was over, Jay offered to buy them a soda. The four girls accepted Jay’s offer.

They all went to the soft drink tent, where Jay told Jimmy that he would like five sodas. Each of the girls told Jimmy what they wanted, and he fetched them out of the cooler. Jimmy gave them each a soda, and Jay gave Jimmy the two and one half dollars. Each can was fifty cents.

While the block party was going on, officer Tony Palmetti radioed for Steve to come to the barricade. When Steve got to the barricade, he saw a Mayflower moving truck parked just outside of the barricade. Steve went over to the driver.

“Yes, officer,” The was driver saying to Steve. “We have the furniture and household goods for a John Shepard and 1734 Ginger Lane, Pine Forest. If there is a carnival going on, how are we going to get this truck load to the house so we can unload it?”

“I’m officer Steve Hastings, Pine Forest police department. I will see if I can find Mr. Shepard. He is helping out on one of the grills. While I am looking for him, have a brat and a beer. You have to pay for food, drinks and rides. The money goes for a very good charitable cause. Steve went over by the brat and hot dog grill and told steve his furniture and things were here. Stev also said that with the block party going on, he couldn’t allow ther truck to back in to the lane to unload it. Then Steve had a bright idea.

“You know, Mr. Shepard,” Steve told John Shepard. “We could have them unload the beds. That seems to be the most important thing right now. They would have to walk them down to your cottage, but at least they would be there. I will also call my lieutenant and see if we can’t leave the truck where it is until Monday, when the lane will be cleared. I will let the driver know.”

“Thank you, officer Hastings. I will talk to the driver after you have spoken to your lieutenant.”

Steve walked a few feet from where everybody was at, and took out his hand held radio.

“566 to 618.”

“618, go ahead 566.”

“Lieutenant, we have a moving van here at the barricade to Ginger Lane with a truck load of furniture and other household items. They want to know how they are going to get the furniture to 1734 Ginger Lane, which now is owned by the Shepard family. I suggest we can leave the truck where it is until Monday, when they can back the truck in to the lane and unload it.”

“Sounds good. You are the senior officer there. Whatever you think is best. Tell the driver that the Pine Forest police department will put them up in the Rymer Hotel for the weekend. We still have tomorrow to go before the carnival leaves, early Monday morning, and the block party tents are taken down.”

“566 to 618, 10-4.”

Steve told John Shepard that they could leave the truck there until Monday morning, and that he would take the driver and his helper to the Rymer Hotel and put them up for the weekend.

“The truck will be safe where it is. Nobody is going to bother it.”

“Alright, I will talk to the driver, and see what he thinks.” John told Steve. Steve resumed his rounds, while John Shepard went to talk to the movers.

“Hi,” John said said, in a cheerful greeting. “I’m John Shepard, and my house is the last one on the left. I’m afraid you’re going to have to move the beds, at least, by hand, and the rest on Monday morning. Officer Steve Hastings of the Pine Forest police department said they will put you guys up in the Rymer Hotel. Just ask one of the officers where it is. Steve also said you can leave your truck here.

“When they clean out the carnival and take down the tents, then you can back the truck in and unload everything else. But, right for now, the beds are the most important things.”

“Nice to meet you, John, I’m Paul and this is Clancy. We’ve been a team of movers, now, for the last ten years. I don’t think moving the beds by hand would be a problem. We will get them out, and bring them down.”

“If you need any help, just ask,” John said, volunteering his services.

“Nah, we can manage. We have a flat bed dolly besides an appliance dolly. So, we will manage.”

“Alright, I will go and tell the family you are here. While you are here, feel free to take part in our block party. Admission is free, but you have to pay for food, rides and drinks. The money goes for a very good charitable cause.”

“Thank you, John. Do you serve beer?”

“Yes, we do, Paul. There is a beer tent, a brat and hot dog grill, and two other grills. You will see as you go through the block party. There is also a soft drink tent for any kind of soda you like.”

“Well, a nice brew and a brat sounds good right about now. Come on Clancy, let’s get the beds down to their house. 1734, right, John?”

“Yes, the last house on the left.”

The movers began doing their job. They first got the flat bed dolly out,then started getting the bed frames, mattresses and pillows on to the dolly. The next thing was getting the boxes marked bedrooms. Each box was marked as to whose bedroom it came from.

Jimmy saw the movers and went over to them as they walked the dolly towards 1734 Ginger Lane, Pine Forest, Addison County, Small Town America. The movers took the dolly as far as they could and took the beds and walked them in the house.

Eileen Shepard was there waiting for them, and showed them which room each box and bed frame went to. They put the pieces in each correctly, and then returned the dolly to the truck, locked the tailgate and cab doors. Then Paul and Clancy went to enjoy the fair.

While Paul and Clancy were enjoying the block party, John and Eileen Shepard were busy putting the beds together. That took them most of the day, but, when they got the beds put together, and made them up with the bedding from the boxes, they went back to enjoy the block party. There was still enough time to anjoy what was left of the day.

John Shepard bought a few tickets and went to play a few games. He went to the one where you have to knock down three stacks of milk bottles. How he did it, even he doesn’t know, but he threw the softball really hard and knocked down all nine bottles with the one ball. The man running the game, was amazed, and then offered John anything on the top shelf. John picked out a really nice vase they had. After all, this present was for Eileen. John took the vase and put it in their bedroom. He then went back to help out at the beer tent.

By this time, it was getting on about seven thirty, and the block party was still going as strong as ever. The two grown up children, Paul and Clancy were riding in the bumper cars, and having a grand time. Steve Hastings was watching them for a bit, and decided they were not going to start any trouble. The two men decided to see what Pine Forest looked like, so they went on the Ferris wheel. Anybody who has been on a Ferris wheel, knows you can see almost forever, when you are at the top.

By the time the two movers were finished riding the Tilt-A-Whirl, it was going on ten o’clock. The loud speakers set up around the lane, notified the party goers that the carnival and block party would be closing down, and then the voice added that tomorrow was another day.
Pine Forest, Addison County, Small Town America is a fictional area of the United States. While there may be references to actual places in this story, they are placed here for entertainment purposes and not to give an exact location of where this story is located. Thank you all for reading and commenting. Barbara Lynn Terry.

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