I was west of Dover enjoying a drive through the country on a beautiful spring day when I came upon a car accident at an intersection. One vehicle was on its side in a soybean field and the other was a crumpled mass in a ditch. A small group of people had formed near the road to assist in any way they could. Fortunately, no one was hurt.
I parked my car off to the side and walked up to see if I could help. I was immediately approached by an Amish gentleman who was standing there looking over the aftermath. He was a tall guy. He towered over me. He had a long beard and wore a denim jacket and dungarees with a straw hat.
He told me that he had watched the incident occur and proceeded to point out which car was where and who was at fault. I was not certain how to take this, so I politely listened and nodded. He was really selling the story to me so I did not want to cut him short. When he finished, I thanked him and turned back to my car. Everything seemed under control. I was about to leave when the man said something that stopped me in my tracks.
"I am an FBI Agent."
I live close to a large Amish community so it is not uncommon to interact with one of its members. It is a rarity, however, when one claims to be a Special Agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation. This was new, undiscovered territory.
When I turned back to the man to see where this was going, he dug deep into his jean's pocket and pulled out something hidden in his clenched fist. He looked both left and right and then stepped uncomfortably close to me. He opened his hand to show me a rusty old badge that was shaped like a star.
He whispered, "I am with the FBI. I received my training up north at the state hospital".
With that statement, he shoved the item back in his pants, tipped his hat, and walked off down the road. I just stood there watching him. He had thrown me into a weird moment and I wanted to relish it as long as possible.
An older Amish man who was standing nearby had been closely watching his younger counterpart during our conversation. Once the FBI Amish Agent walked away from me the old man came over and said, "Don't listen to him. He is not right in the head".
I had figured that much on my own but wished the disclaimer had not been offered. I would have preferred to have left the accident scene that day hoping that there was a chance (however remote) that I had just met one of the most dedicated undercover FBI agents that ever lived.