DETROIT - There’s a police boat on the Detroit River that appears to be armed with machine guns. At least, from a distance they look like machine guns. Let’s get a closer look, because I swear the police boats on Lake Norman don’t have machine guns. Yes, the boats on the Detroit River have machine guns.
"They’re telescopes," says the woman sitting next to me on the People Mover.
So the telescopes in Detroit come with triggers?
"I live here," she says. "And if you write that they’re machine guns, people will get the wrong idea about Detroit."
Here’s my idea about Detroit. The city did a beautiful job with Super Bowl XL. People are friendly, which in the Midwest never is a surprise. There are great places to eat and drink, ethnic neighborhoods, and old, ornate buildings that managed not to be torn down.
Jacksonville also was friendly last year. But the city was overwhelmed because there weren’t enough taxis, roads or restaurants. Detroit has not been overwhelmed.
Getting a taxi Saturday night, however, was an adventure. At least 75 people waited in front of the Marriott Hotel at the Renaissance Center, and with cabs having trouble getting around because of closed roads, the wait was as long as an hour.
My son was in a cab coming toward downtown Detroit, so I called the driver and asked if we could meet him downtown, since he didn’t want even try to maneuver through the closed roads to the Marriott. So three of us ran through the snow, slipping and sliding, trying to find the cab in the middle of a busy street.
"Do you see the white limo? We’re behind the white limo," my son said through a shaky cell phone connection. I think that’s what he said. We ran down the street, saw a white limo, but there was no cab behind it. Half a block later we found another white limo and this time there was a cab behind it and we jumped in.
Here’s friendly. There’s no way a cab was going to come to the little Italian restaurant to take us back to the hotel, so our waiter volunteered.