Maybe it was fate or karma that my last official action in California was a speeding ticket. I hadn't gotten one in a while and I was speeding and was proud of my time.
But when I saw those flashing red lights riding up behind me from a distance, I knew it meant trouble.
Perhaps from protocol or encountering too many drug addled and crazy drivers, the officer looked in and motioned for me to roll down the window.
I knew better than to talk first because perhaps he wanted to say hello or talk about a taillight.
"Do you know how fast you were going?" he queried? "I clocked you from way back there, and you were going ten miles above the speed limit."
"I know you want to get somewhere, but you have to get there safely."
I wanted to comment about the motorcycles that had passed me up but remained mum.
"Are we in Arizona?"
He smiled, put one buff arm towards my window and displayed a California patch.
"But the mile marker back there said 44, so I thought I was 44 miles into Arizona."
"No, you are still in California. Arizona starts at the 150 mile marker."
I gave him all of my info that included a tattered registration card held together by tape, an insurance card and a less than flattering driver's license photo.
"Is this your current address?" he asked through the fog.
"No, because I am moving out of state."
"Do you have a new address?"
"We'll get to that later."
He was gone for several minutes before handing me my exit visa from the state.
"I hope you'll understand if I don't thank you," I said.
"Not at all, Miss Saunders, but I want you to drive safely."
I said that I would, wished him a nice day anyway, and we both drove off. I understood that he was just doing his job, and that it might have been California's way of saying goodbye.