What would you have done?

September 6, 2006

So yesterday, I was driving back from the super-big, extra-special park with my son down a busy rural(ish) highway, two lanes, 50mph.  It was dinner time. On the shoulder stood a young (13?) boy, with a pile of things and a duffle bag next to him. He was thumbing for a ride.

I hesitated for a split second then called 911.  My exact thought was, if I were his mother, I’d sure as hell want someone to call the cops if he were trying to hitchhike.

I told the operator, “There’s a young boy on highway 7 attempting to hitchhike.”

She said, “And what’s the problem?”

I was a bit surprised, since hitchhiking is illegal (Minn. Stat 169.22), for one.  “Well, he’s very young, and he has a couple bags with him, like he might be running away. And I just thought if it were my son trying to hitchhike, I’d want someone to call the police.”

She took down his location and I hung up.   I am weirded out, thinking that this boy could have been picked up by anybody, a random predator. So, was that a waste of time?  Do kids/people still hitchhike?