It’s not often that you get to see life as an objective outsider but that is what city centre patrol at weekend is like. We all get drunk sometimes; it’s not often though that you see what a prat you look when you do!
Every other cycle of shifts we do a weekend of late shifts that start at 5pm and end at 3am (in theory); we are bussed into the city centre to carry out foot patrol in support of our city centre colleagues. The lads love it, the seem to welcome the attention of pissed girls wearing next to no clothes; I, on the other hand, find the lurid suggestions of pissed men faced with a woman in uniform irritating, I don’t have much patience for them and my threshold for anti-social behaviour seems, sometimes, lower than the boys on the shift who think it’s a bit of a laugh – come to think of it, if you’d seen some of them on a night out..!
My ideal patrolling night, on this shift, is to be teamed up with one of the older, more mature members of my team; preferably one of the ones who have young children and simply want to get through the night and get some sleep before doing family stuff the following day; and on Saturday night I did: working with John who has two small girls (3yrs and 5yrs) and who he adores. You can almost see him cringing at some of the alcohol soaked wrecks we see, inwardly hoping that his own daughters don’t turn out like them (I hope he hopes they turn out like me!).
The night passed reasonably well, John and I had a fairly companionable time taking the mickey out of some of the more lurid sights. We only had one serious job to attend, where a lad had been glassed in the face – he was a bit of a mess. The city centre lads dealt with the crime report, so no work there for us, we just helped to calm down the drunken crowd and get details of witnesses.
I’m on early shifts the next few days starting tomorrow; these are the most tiring for me; at least on lates and nights I can stay in bed for ever, on earlies I’m up at 5.30am but still want to stay up and watch TV in the evening.
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