Police in awe as a kid entertains them in California. (Credit: Google)

Police in awe as a kid entertains them in California. (Credit: Google)

In Kim, Reporter

Police in awe as a kid entertains them in California. (Credit: Google)

Many years ago, my family and I moved to the United States for my father’s study abroad program. My family was totally foreign to the new country where the language, culture, and environment was totally different. In our new home in California, my brother and I went to school, my father, his university, and my mother, safely at home.

Our family routine was simple, my father regularly picked us (brother and I) from school after he had finished his classes. It was a routine my brother and I were used to. But on a faithful day, my world came crashing!

On that day, my father had an exam to write. His professor gave him an extra time so he had enough time to complete this all-important exam. It was a make-or-mar exam and he gave it his all.

When i finished school that day, I greeted all my mates as they got into their parent’s cars until every one of my classmates left. I was the last standing student, nervously waiting for my father to come pick me. I was alone outside the parking lot with my school teacher -I assume- she was sweating and feeling unease.

My father not only took extra time to write his exam, he totally forgot about picking me up from school! He drove straight home with excitement, eager to tell my mom of his brilliance. As soon as he got home, my mother knew something was unusual- God bless mothers! There was supposed to be her son happily hugging her but there was no one standing beside my father. My mother asked, “Where’s In?

By that question, my father was alerted and looked around finally realizing what he had done- not picking me up from school!

My parents panicked! According to their story, they rushed to the school and everybody was gone! After a few phone calls, they were told to go to a nearby police station. “Near by police station?” They exclaimed! Apparently in California, the law states that kids whose parents refuse to show up and/or pick up their wards after school, such kids are taking to a police station. However, he was totally unaware of this law.

As this was going on, I had my first experience in a U.S police car. My teacher reluctantly had to send me to the police station since that’s the law. What’s interesting is that I didn’t feel bad or nervous about the concept of police. I still remember a policewoman reading me a book and offering me lollipops.

Maybe that’s the reason why I wasn’t nervous and rather perceived the police station as a place where people give you good things to eat and play- I thought it was another play house. Coming to the climax, in my memory, I remember my family in front of the lobby talking with several policemen on a high tone that wasn’t pleasant to hear at all.

After all, my parents told me that they literally cried and begged to the police that it was their mistake for not being careful. Luckily, there was a high ranked- Korean officer who could speak Korean. As a Korean, the officer understood our family’s situation, so he let me go with my family. My parents also told me that, if the situation got worse, I could’ve been sent to another family and be separated.

The officer warned my parents that if this happened again, that I was going to be sent to another family. It was a close situation where it could’ve been devastating. However, I reunited with my family once and for all. With this relief, I went back to school the next day and as soon as my teacher saw me, she cried to my parents apologizing for sending me to the police station. She was terribly sorry for doing what she had done.