I had engaged the winch and just pulled up the slack when the Deputy jumped out of his car and ran over to me. "How long is this going to take?" he asked, very excited.
"I'm not sure," I answered, "Ten, fifteen minutes."
His eyes opened wide. "A train is going to be here in three minutes!"
My mind started racing. Did I even have time to let out the slack, disengage the winch, run over and unhook the winch cable, and move the tow truck off the tracks? Or would I have to abandon the truck to save myself? I had to try to get the truck off the tracks, but every second I stood there frozen was one less second I had to act. The Deputy saw the panic on my face and held his composure for several seconds before bursting into laughter.
He was kidding.
He had waited for that perfect moment, when the cable was tight and I was standing at the rear of the tow truck, where it would take the maximum amount of time to disengage and vacate, and he knew he had gotten me good.
I guess even Sheriff's Deputies need to find a way to amuse themselves at Midnight on a Tuesday night.
Have a safe and profitable week.