Not so positive.

Sunday, March 31st, 1996

It’s still March as I write this, so it’s no April fool. We were robbed yesterday, Saturday. Broken in on. We went to have a nice dinner with my brother and his wife, and when we returned, around ten in the evening, sat down to watch a video for a while.

I went into the downstairs bathroom. Odd, the linen cabinet was open. Back to the movie. Went into my office. Odd, the window is open, just a bit. The room is even sloppier than usual. There’s a faint outline of a footprint on my computer’s tower case. This is not good.

Went upstairs. Carefully. Someone had distributed the contents–damn near all the contents–of our dresser drawers freely around, in search of valuables.

We don’t have a lot that falls into that category (very little of the traditional Rolexes and jewels that crooks favor.) So he–I’m assuming here–settled for a few little portable things. A watch belonging to my grandfather. A necklace of Sammy’s. A video camera.

It almost seems as if we scared this person off in the act, because he exited, abruptly it appears, from our upstairs bedroom, into the rains and cold mist that pervaded our town last night.

We called 911. Of course. It didn’t take long for an Atlanta Police cruiser to show up on our street, spotlight ablaze, searching for our address. He overshot the house, realized his mistake, slammed into reverse, and…backed into our neighbor Chris’s Dodge Dakota at a fair rate of speed.

This seemed, at darn near midnight, quite funny to Sammy and me. (Later, I apologized to Chris with ‘I’m sorry our cop hit your car.’)
The accident was something the police could do something about, and it attracted another four cruisers loaded with supervisors and accident investigators. The cop that hit the truck eventually came over, contrite, apologetic. He seemed like a nice guy. He also could do little more than take down our information.

So that’s how we spent a good deal of last night.

I’m not going to go on at length about the feelings that wash over you when this kind of violation happens. The end result was not nearly as catastrophic as the 1991 oak tree that bisected our house. But still. This may well have happened to you in one form or another–it happens a lot, especially here in the big city. But it also happened once to my wife’s parents living in rural Michigan. So go figure.

We’ll go figure, and we’ll go clean things up and try to get back into the groove, with deadlines to meet, work to be done, television and taxes and academia. Sitting here in my office looking at the window where someone entered 24 hours ago, it’s just…a bit…jarring.

Here’s hoping for a better start to your week.