Week 6 - The Interview
Of course things start formally. Plain clothes Detective Surly took a new,
pre-printed, witness statement form from the pile.
Son of? (Different culture I know but I could see each surname that had gone before me was either S/O "son of" or D/O "daughter of".)
Religion? I hesitated, a little surprised and unprepared for the question. My thoughts turned to the 2001 UK census when a fair proportion of citizens, including myself, had stated their religion as "Jedi". Thinking this might not go down too well I was about to state the obvious when I was offered Muslim? Christian? Clearly I hesitated a moment too long again as Surly said ok "pagan". My thoughts turned to druids and hippies watching the solstice sunrise at Stonehenge and decided that would be fine.
Address and phone number seemed unlikely to be helpful but I complied nonetheless.
Then the tough questioning begun Ė or so I expected. First question seemed to be the one that would solve the whole case. Who did I think had done it? Of course I hadnít the faintest idea but I suggested either someone with a key during the night or someone who took the opportunity after the office had been opened but before the theft was discovered. Interesting. This didnít seem to have been considered!
Lots of thoughtful pauses Ė just like in the TV detective serials
Despite a visit from a "nice cop" - just to balance the comfort of the conversation and Iím sure to reassure me that they did know what they were doing - my responses were written out slowly, and not too legibly, in Swahili.
Pleased with his work Det Surly swung the page around and asked me to read it. But itís in Swahili I protested. "Try" he said. I managed to understand the first page quite well and was particularly pleased to spot heíd put the wrong date in the narrative, which he corrected. By the second page his handwriting and my concentration were deteriorating. I protested that I didnít really understand. "So read it out", he told me. The situation was almost comical, unless you were in the room thinking any moment now theyíll throw me into a cell as a prime suspect. I tried, and with some prompting got to the end. "Ok, so please sign it" was my reward.
I was somewhat surprised that I wasnít asked about the whereabouts of my key or when I had opened the office.. but there you go Ė I guess thatís why I never made it into the Police force?
Week 6 - The Interview