We left off our last story with the end of our first date! I texted Jack to apologize for being an embarrassing goofball, and he replied. So, how does a first date get us a run in with the police? Read on to find out!
I hit send on my apology text while on my way home with my dad. I figured that Jack thought I was some crazy person and would never want to talk to me again. But, he replied immediately! He told me how cool he thought my dad was and how they connected (him being a sound engineer, and my dad pushing a few buttons once for a show). He also explained to me how he was such a nervous mess leading up to this show that he forgot EVERYTHING at home, including his shoes, hence the flip flops. My favorite line from his long text was “You are not only a beautiful girl (I seriously didn’t recognize you today by the way). You are an awesome and super smart designer who speaks her mind 9 times out of 10 even if it’s ridiculous or could be embarrassing. That is amazing.”
We continued to talk over the next few days pretty regularly. Our concert went on for two weeks and it was almost time for me to end my job at the Dr. Phillips Center. The end of the job was strike, where we had to take down all of our lighting instruments and load out all equipment. This is not an easy task for one person, so I somehow convinced Jack to go back with me to help. He knew he was getting himself into something ridiculous, we just didn’t know the extent of it at that time. Jack gladly said yes and spent the day with me in between classes killing time.
We went to Moe’s for our first dinner out together and then took my car to Downtown Orlando for strike. A few other students showed up to help, but it was primarily Jack and I doing all the grunt work. We make a great team (hence why we are now photographers together too!!), so the night went by quickly. We finished the job in a few hours and got back in my car to leave around 9 pm.
Jack and I were cruising down 408, heading back to UCF. We were just talking and getting to know each other. That’s when I saw blue and red flashing lights behind me. I wasn’t speeding or doing anything wrong and had never been pulled over before by a police officer. I started having a panic attack. At that point, Jack didn’t know about my struggle with anxiety, so this was kind of just thrown on him. We pulled over immediately and I pulled out my license. Jack began looking through my glove compartment for my registration and insurance card. Dumb Haleigh had kept EVERY. SINGLE. COPY. of her registration from 2012, so the mission to find the right one was difficult.
The police officer approached Jack’s passenger window and asked me to turn my headlights on. I showed him that they were on (while insanely shaking from anxiety) and he asked for all of my paperwork. Jack still couldn’t find the registration that was current and I freaked out more. He handed the police officer what we could find and explained the registration situation. The police officer came back and informed me that my taillights were out. Of all days, times, and situations, it had to be my first time bonding with Jack. He handed us a warning for faulty equipment and sent us on our way. I was in tears and was so embarrassed. Jack kept assuring me that everything was okay and nothing to be upset over. He had me call my dad to figure out the next steps. This guy was taking care of me from day one!
At the time, Jack was still living in Melbourne (an hour or so away from UCF) and I had moved back in with my parents to save money (also an hour away). I couldn’t drive my car back with no taillights, so my dad was going to drive up north to get me. Jack told him no, and that he would be more than happy to drive me back, adding two extra hours to his trip. We climbed in his car and started our journey. We have been inseparable since that day.
Come back in two weeks for more of our story! If you haven’t read parts one and two, click below!