It is my last full week of work at Liberty University. For all intents and purposes, tomorrow is my last day. I will make an appearance on Sept. 14, which is my last day on payroll, but truly I am wrapping everything up now to ensure the transition for my department is smooth.
Anyways, I have been here at Liberty as a student or staff member since 2005. In that time, I have had several encounters with LUPD. That does not mean I've been pulled over numerous times or received an abundance of parking tickets (though each of those situation did happen at least once in my time here). Thankfully, my car has never been towed or we would have a real beef! But... I have walked past LUPD officers. I have driven past LUPD officers. LUPD officers have directed traffic I was in. Etc. Etc. Etc.
I have not had a good impression of LUPD since the beginning. For the most part, they seem to be preoccupied with themselves. They seem to think more highly of themselves than I believe they should. It's not like Liberty's campus is swarmed with miscreants who keep them on their toes. Yes, I know every college campus has it's fair share of crime... but it's not like we're at a state school. Seriously. The interactions I've had with LUPD have not been pleasant. They have been gruff and downright rude to me when I simply asked a question or even (literally) when I passed them in the hall and smiled. It is like they are just waiting for an excuse to pounce and wield their ill-displayed power.
Now, the father of one of my friends is a LUPD officer. He is an extremely pleasant man. So I don't like to associate him with LUPD in my mind.
Anyways, this morning one of hte LUPD vehicles and I played tag. I was walking one way and was going to veer to walk behind the vehicle as they were passing. They stopped to let me pass in front of them, then started driving again as I changed my direction to walk in front of them. Eventually we figured out who was going where and as he passed me he said "Sorry!" with a big smile on his face.
That is so simple. A smile. But... it was enough to redeem LUPD in my mind. He was a polite, courteous officer. He didn't feel like he was entitled to go first since he was an officer and I was just a mere employee.
Thank you, sir.
Let's hope other officers don't mess it up so I can leave with a pleasant memory of LUPD.