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Fear society

About an hour ago, a guy who lives on my street posted to his facebook the following:
my house was robbed. I'm absolutely fucking sick right now
I called Graham immediately to ask when he's supposed to get off today. They're doing final dress rehersal and he's actually not needed for that so I knew he'd be off relatively early. He wasn't quite ready, and he asked if I could take off a late lunch to check the house. We were both thinking about the dogs.

I left the other half of my lunch on my desk and headed home, thinking about the things I probably should have secured better. The dogs, of course, were my main concern; but there is stuff I care about, too. My laptop, I figured, would be toast. A good hunk of my jewelry is hanging on my bedroom wall, probably pretty easy to grab. No individual piece is particularly expensive, but there's a lot of it, and I like all of it quite a bit. Graham's monitor is really nice, and the TV is probably attractive, though bulky to get out of the house.

And I kicked myself over some of the security stuff that I sometimes neglect. I have a sign up that says that the house is protected by some home security service, and there's a motion detector in the living room. But I never signed up for the service. The back gate is a pain in the ass to properly latch and lock, so it's often just closed. Last night, actually, when we came home from dinner, the back gate was ajar, and we briefly wondered if someone had gone around back to break in.

When I got home, the dogs were overjoyed to see me in our perfectly unmolested house, and I started to relax and let some of my parinoia go. I may not have an electronic service, but I have one of the most alert security systems out there. Crianza barks her head off anytime someone comes near the house, and she goes apeshit if someone touches the back gate, because usually that means Graham's come home. Celosa bodily attacks anyone who walks into the house (something we're trying to get her to stop doing, but puppies can be stubborn), granted, she's trying to love them to death, but a stranger isn't going to know that. Crianza keeps barking at newcomers until she's been given the all clear.

And I've been in my house for almost seven and a half years without incident. Yeah, my front porch furniture was stolen a few years back, and there was that time the police searched my back yard but all in all, it's been a pretty uneventful place to live, crime wise. Our neighborhood newsletter includes monthly reports on the crime data in the vicinity, and for July, there were only two burglaries. June had none. My neighbors are alert and know each other (enough to become facebook friends!) and unusual or suspicious activity is generally reported or challenged pretty quickly. Graham still is irritated with our "nosy neighbor" who once barged into our house after hearing a "suspicious noise" shortly after he moved in. But still, she's a great source of information on pretty much everyone who lives in a fifteen house radius, and she keeps an eye on things. A good friend just bought the house behind us, and we're talking about putting a gate between the two properties so our dogs can have companions and a bitter place to play. Neighbors keeping an eye out for each other isn't a bad thing.

I really feel bad for my neighbor, especially since his house was really torn up during the hurricane last year and he just finished making it nice again. He posted on facebook again, 32 minutes ago, after I'd asked a question about the timing of the burglary:
It was this morning - between 9am when I left for work and noon when I came home. Stephen down the street said that my dog had gotten out, so that's why I initially came back. The robbers had come through my side wooden gate and around to the back door. 10K of stuff they took - just walked it out the front door, no one saw anything
It pisses me off that not only did they steal his stuff, violate his home and make him feel terrible, but they put his dog in danger. I feel horrible for him, and I'm sure for the next few weeks, we'll all be a little more careful about how we secure our homes. But I don't think it's going to change my life too much.

And I'm sort of glad now it takes a lot to open the front door. Maybe all this humidity is ok...


( 2 comments — Say something )
Oct. 16th, 2009 06:24 am (UTC)
Oh wow, scary! Hope your neighbor gets his stuff back or was well-insured. Glad the dog was okay, and that your house was undisturbed.
Oct. 19th, 2009 03:14 pm (UTC)
I'm surprised they broke in since he had a dog. You always hear that burglars tend to avoid houses with dogs.

When my house was broken into (on Valentine's Day no less) - they were after specific items. Flat-screen TVS, guns, jewelry. Easy to carry, easy to pawn. I had several gold necklaces with gemstone pendants hanging on a shelf, several gold rings in the jewelry box on my dresser, and the only thing they took was my TV (they remembered the remote even), a camera bag that had a lens in it but no camera(the camera was sitting out in a box right beside it and they missed it), and my diamond ring. The thing that still pisses me off is the ring. That was a gift from my parents when I turned 16 and was made from different pieces of jewelry that belonged to family members. It was truly one-of-a-kind. My house was one of 3 in our neighborhood that day. Until then - it was a quiet neighborhood with no crime issues. I blame it on all the college students who have moved into the area.

That sick to your stomach feeling really knocks you over. I'm thankful my Gus was down at my mom's house. They either would have hurt him - or he would have escaped and gotten hurt. I now have two dogs and a security system, but I still have times where I get angry about someone violating my home. For a while after it happened I seriously thought about getting my CHL. Nothing I hate more than a thief.

Glad your house was ok. Sorry for the neighbor. That just sucks.
( 2 comments — Say something )