2003.01.16 - BSY (Best story of the year)

Let me please introduce myself: Philippe BESCOND, 45 years-old, living with my dogs (Siberian Huskies and Czechoslovakian Wolfdogs) 150 km north from Paris (France) and working as a laboratory technician for a pharmaceutical group near Paris.I dream for new Csv for a long time, one male and one or two females.I had already took contact with some breeders, found on the www.wolfdog.org site, when I pay attention to the first litter born in Poland, under the 'z Peronowki' affix. I negociate with Przemek and Margo Peron for the last available male of the litter. Being on holidays until January 20th, I decided their requirements are those of responsible breeders, not just producers, and called them in Poland in order to organize my trip to them around January 16th. At that moment, the temperature in Poland was -20°C...
I must say I'm a few crazy when preparing such travels... I always decided for a destination 2 or 3 days before moving to the choosen location.

First problem: Poland is not an actual member of the european community, I need a passeport, mine is out of date since a long time and the french administration ask at least 2 weeks for a new passeport. Przemek and Margo were kind enough, living some kilometers from the german border, to suggest to meet me in Germany... Przemek reserved a room for one night in Waldow, a few kilometers from Guben, the border city. Our rendez-vous is planned Thursday 16th, in Guben, at 19h00.

Second problem: I realized Wednesday 15th that my mobile phone has not the world option, and the provider ask 48h to install it... I subscribed it, and... wait and see, as usual!!!

Thursday morning at 04h00, I let my bed... I didn't really sleep, half excited. The itinerary given on the internet speaks about 1180km... I quit my home at 06h00, after feeding and watering the dogs... I enter a highway after 20km, and will exit 1100km later... Crossing the belgian border, a SMS inform me I'm connected to the belgian network. Crossing the german border, another one inform me I'm connected to the german network. Everything is OK!

I lost some time around Dortmund, due to bad informations reported by the internet site. I send a SMS to Przemek to confirm my position... The end of the travel is difficult, I'm a few tired, despite of frequent pauses... At 18h45, I stop on a parking, I'm 50 km from Frankfurt (Oder), the end of the highway... I contact Przemek again, he ask me to call him when arriving in Frankfurt, then we will be in Guben at the same time. I'm on the road again... AND HERE START THE REAL STORY!!!!!!!!!!!!!

19h00. The car in front of me slow down, and suddenly the word POLIZEI appears on the rear glass... They gently force me to park my car on the next parking. Another police car block me. A civil man introduce himself as a member of the border police, and ask me driving licence, insurance, car papers, identity card. When I request him an explanation, he tells me the type of car I drive (a pick-up) is subject to traffics between west and east Europa... Regular control...

20h00. I'm still in my car, on the parking... Mens (4) are discussing around my papers... I asked if ther is a problem, their answer is 'No comment'! I call Przemek to inform him I will surely late.

21h00. Another official police car have join us on the parking. They discuss around my driving licence. Finally, they ask me to close my car, and take me to the police office, 3 km from there. I really don't understand, they don't want to answer my questions. They put me in a waiting room, just saying: 'Wait'.

21h30. A policeman come to me and says in a bad english 'You know why you're there...'. I answer 'No', then he says 'No? You're using a false driving licence, we are waiting for a translator, we will write an accusation protocole, then you will be free, but without your car. I say it was crazy, I ask they call official french authorities, their answer is 'No more discussion, just wait for the translator'.

22h00. The translator arrives, an officier take us in his office. The german police accuse me to drive a car with a false driving licence! I assimilated to a criminal, they took all my fingerprints, photos, ask me for piercing, tatoos, and so on, like a criminal who have killed somebody...!!! They decide to send the licence to an expert, the result will be send to a judge tomorrow (?), Friday 17th, at 14h00. Now I'm free...

01h00. I'm in Fürstenwalde, with the translator, all hotels are closed, I'm hungry (and angry...), and I'm tired. The tranlator help me to recover my car from the parking to another one situated in front of the police building.

02h00. I'm alone, and start to sleep in the car... Hummm, to sleep...

06h30. I'm excited and really angry. I turn the problem in my head all the night. I must come back in France, but WITH my car! I call a friend (?) of mine in France, who works for an european organisation. His opinion is to contact the french ambassy in Berlin. I obtain the phone number of the ambassy from the wife of my brother in France, they don't answer, obtain another phone number from Przemek (I'm so confused, Przemek, to awake you so late in the night and soon in the morning...), they don't answer too... until 08h30... I'm saved!!!

08h30. Saved? Not yet! The man who answer my call says they will send a mail to the police to protest... I must dream!!!! A snail-mail!!!! I lost my (legendary) calm, explode to the phone... I don't ask them, I tell them, it's just like an order, to act for me as soon as possible... I feel the man understand I don't laugh anymore, he finally find the police captain in Berlin who says me 'It seems you have a small problem..???'. A small problem... I make a brief summury of the situation, then he don't lost time, ask me my name, all available informations and promise me to call me back in a few moment. I call Przemek another time, and suggest him, if he have some time, to come to Fürstenwalde with Margo, and Anubis Wolf, the puppy... I'm here for him, and for a meeting with them... They kindly accept, and I would like to thanks them again here...

09h30. The french policeman call me back. Official authorities confirm the licence is a valid one... He contact the german police to accelerate the procedure, but my licence is already in the expert hands. Just wait...

11h00. I'm in my car, waiting, the officier ask me to come to the police office... She give me back my licence, without any excuse word, saying 'All is OK'...

12h00. Przemek and Margo arrive in Fürstenwalde... I discover Anubis Wolf and his mother Jolly. I like the size and morphology of both of them... We enter a pizzeria for a lunch, chatting until 15h00... We have so many questions one for each other, mainly concerning CsVs...

16h00. All papers are in order, they come back to Poland, I come back to France... So long, guys, hope to meet you again soon, may be at the summer camp. The road is long to my home, I arrive around 06h30 Saturday morning...

07h30. I join my bed for a short rest and awake at... 17h30!!!! Who says TIRED?

End of the story... End? Not yet! A local newspaper in Berlin had been informed of this adventure and published an article in the Taz Berlin (http://taz.de/) of January 24th, as well as a follow up January 25th.

Margo says I'm now a celebrity in this part of Germany and need to wait a personal phone call of Schroeder! Wait and see!!!!

Philippe