When first seeing the neighborhood and house that I decided to move to, I fell in "heavy like". Not love, but much more than a casual fling kinda thing. It had much to recommend it. Three blocks to the water, with a 2-mile park skirting the entire waterfront. Small, quaint homes with decent sized yards and mature trees. Original hardwood floors throughout. 5 minutes to work. And affordable.
The drawbacks? Not terribly far from the not-so-nice neighborhoods. A lot of rental homes mixed in with retirees and absent homeowners. A neighbor who ran a daily yard sale. A lawn I had to maintain.
The first two weeks were fairly ideal. Arranging the furniture to fit into the small rooms. Unpacking collectibles to finally display. Buying my first lawn-mower to groom my first lawn. A lot of firsts that had me feeling grown-up.
Until my lawn-mower was stolen the second week. Now, I was grown-up and feeling awfully naive and trusting. And feeling mad. And ashamed. Add vulnerable and out $160 for said lawn-mower. A slight depression ensued for a few days and then I got pissed and was determined not to let some crack-head ruin my buzz.
So, I dusted off the credit card and bought another lawn-mower. Which resides in my utility room next to the washer and dryer, safe and sound. If not giving off the slight wiff of Eau de Exxon. I could live with the odor more than waist high weeds. And I grew up a little more, and went on with my flirtation with my house and neighborhood.
Until last week. Last Wednesday I came home for lunch (another benefit of living 5 minutes from work). I turned on the T.V. and went into the kitchen, opened the fridge, and grabbed the ham, mayo, and bread. I sat them on the counter and my eyes wandered 3 feet to the right where my back door was standing open about 2 inches. WTF!
I went to my bedroom and saw immediately the contents of my valet box spread across my bed. All my bling, gone like that. My grandfather's initial ring. The Turkish Puzzle ring I brought back from -where else- Turkey. My dad's Air Force ring. The gold nugget bracelet that my grandmother gave me that was already out of fashion when she bought it for me on QVC. And more. But it was my grandfather's ring that upset me the most. He didn't have much in life, and that was all I had of him after his death many years ago.
So, of course I called the police. And found out just how little they really care. He must have said three words the entire time I'm telling my story. No empathy whatsoever. He seemed bored. Like maybe he'd rather be ticketing speeders than standing there in silence writing in his little notebook.
So, I've taken it upon myself to learn about pawn shops. Interesting business, that. When they buy jewelry, they have to write a description and send it in to the Sheriff's Office. Where I'm sure **rolls eyes** my deputy is poring over the list looking for my stuff. Only after 30 days pass can the pawn shop put them on display for sale, or 90 days if it's a pawn-loan. The pawn store operator I talked to smirked knowingly when I described the deputy's demeanor. And I will be visiting every pawn shop in three weeks looking for my grandfather's ring.
And I have a shiny new dead-bolt on my rear door. I'm thinking of electrifying it. And stringing barbed wire on top of my fence. Maybe a tiger trap with sharpened bamboo sticks in the bottom.
So, I will not be a victim, and I will not be driven from a house I really, really like. But, not love. I don't know if love is possible yet.