At the Police Station
I drove G to the central police station where he had to make a statement. The place seemed fairly chaotic. Nobody was manning the front desk, but seemingly at random various police officers would arrive and take away one of the waiting to somewhere more private to conduct constabulary business. Eventually G was taken away for his interview. About an hour later he reemerged to tell me that the police didn’t believe his story about his pick-up having been hit by another vehicle, and that they wanted him to pay a 400 Baht fine for the damage to the concrete barrier at the central reservation.
G didn’t want to accept this fine – it would affect the insurance claim. G was told to wait whilst the police officers had a private discussion.
At this point I went home. I hadn’t showered or shaved by this point, wasn’t wearing any deodorant, and was wearing yesterday’s shirt. To put it bluntly, I smelt pretty bad.
I put a dish of home-made baked beans in the oven to warm and quickly showered. Then suddenly remembered something I’d seen at the scene of the crash: there was a headlight near the start of the skid marks. I drove back to the scene, took my life in my hands again as I crossed the Asia Highway, and started searching. I couldn’t find the headlight, but I found several pieces of silver plastic, some of which appeared to be from a bumper. (G’s pick-up is white.) I gathered these up and went back to the police station. As I arrived there G ‘phoned me to say that he needed 2,500 Baht; the police had agreed to investigate the crash, subject to a fee. I drove to the nearest ATM and withdrew the money.
At this point G was at the police vehicle compound on the outskirts of Ayutthaya. He said that he’d be back at the police station in 15 minutes. I had a choice of waiting in police reception with its hard, plastic chairs, pesky flies and stifling air, or outside with its even harder, concrete benches, equally pesky flies, and baking sun leavened only by a slight breeze. I chose the latter. More than an hour later G turned up. It took a further hour for him to pay the fee and complete the paperwork.
But that wasn’t the end of it. We had to drive to the police vehicle compound to complete even more paperwork. “Compound”, perhaps, is rather too grand a word for a patch of dirt with a couple of huts at the end of a gravel track. Here there was a handful of smashed-up cars and a larger number of smashed-up motorcycles.
G’s pick-up at the Police Compound
Eventually G was free to go. By now it was mid-afternoon, and my baked beans had been in the oven rather too long. Still, having only had two mouthfuls of muesli all day, I thought they tasted fine.
Things are still far from over. G will have to come back to Ayutthaya to make a further statement, and will then have to appear in court. The toughest thing for him, though, will be how to tell his mother.