I was downtown the other day when I spotted a little hidden-away park I had never seen. Being the opportunist, I circled the block – found an open parking meter – grabbed my camera – and headed to take some shots.
While waiting for the light to change so I could cross the street to the park, I decided to check the settings on my camera. I did this by taking a shot of a nearby building and then adjusting the settings. Well, I had just snapped my second picture and was changing the settings when a non-descript black SUV cut across three lanes of traffic and pulled in front of me. The tinted window slid down smoothly to reveal a man holding a badge in my direction asking, “Can I talk to you for a minute?” Well, with a pretty high pucker factor, I said, “Sure.”
The man asked, “What are you taking pictures of?”
“Nothing yet… I am going across the street to that park to take some shots.”
“We get a little nervous when we see someone taking pictures of buildings,” he stated and asked for my ID.
I handed him my license and he quizzed me as to its contents… “Are you from Texas?”
“Uh, yeah…. Houston,” I responded wondering if this really ever catches bad guys in a lie.
I asked, “So are you like, homeland security?” He responded that he was with the State Department or Department of the Interior… something like that. I guess I tuned him out a bit too.
Anyway, it was kinda cool and kinda exciting. I have mixed feelings about the incident… on the one hand, I felt kinda intruded upon and put out – but on the other hand, I feel better knowing that there are people looking out for suspicious activity.