Monday, January 15, 2018

Why It's Important To Always Have A Clean And Well Kept Home

My house was broken into today at some point.  But wait...let's bring it down a notch.  It wasn't exactly broken into, but rather strolled through by a complete stranger which apparently is just called "trespassing".  
I was leaving my house in a hurry this morning and taking my dog with me so she wouldn't be alone and I put her outside for one last go and I remember thinking what a pain in the ass my back door was.  I am good at locking up before I leave.  
Except for today.  
I remember looking at the front door and noting that the door was locked.  Awesome.  All set to leave.
I had taken care of all my things for the day:  picked up Farrah, spent time with James, stopped off at the store to grab an easy meal for me and Farrah for when we got home.  As soon as I pulled toward the house and the garage door opened, I noticed I didn't need to open the garage door as the front door to my house was wide open.
The front door to my house was WIDE OPEN.
I called James, "Ummmmm....someone's been in my house.  I distinctly remember NOT leaving the door wide open."
I called 911 and the dispatcher lady sounded more afraid than I did.  She'd asked if I wanted to stay on the phone until the police came and I said no.  I had to get off the phone and straighten out my head.
The first thing I said to my horrified child in the back seat was, "Well, it's a good thing we don't have anything that anyone wants."
"I do!!!" was her reply.  Apparently, I'm not good at soothing an eleven year old who has an awesome collection of everything in her room.  I let her know everything was going to be okay and once the police were there, we'd know if there was truly anything to be upset about.

Then we realized there was.

Our house.  I had left in such a hurry, I hadn't made my bed and I had a pile of towels that needed to be washed on the floor and clothes that needed to be hung up on the bed.  Bills that needed to be paid were on the kitchen table from going over them earlier.  I'd run the dishes, but there were more waiting for the next round in the sink for when I got home.
Then Farrah said, "Oh my god...are they going to go into my room?!!"
"Of course they are!"

Our conversations suddenly went from, "What if the TVs or computers were taken?" to "What if they see my bra, the mess on the floor, or dirty laundry?!!!"  Our idea of what mattered took a serious shift.  Hence, the title.

But here's what happened.  Three cops showed up, guns drawn, pounded on the outside of the house yelling, "Douglas County PD! Make yourself known!"  They repeated this three times and entered the house (we stayed in the car).  When the flashlights were on in Farrah's room, she freaked.  She freaked when they were in the office.  She sighed in relief when they were in the "hobby room" as it is the meditation and art it's pretty awesome.  When they came out to tell me the house was clear, they also told me what had happened.
In my rush to get Twig ready, I checked the front door lock, but neglected to check the back door she had just come through.  I'd left my back door completely accessible.  We went around and checked the house, all the while apologizing for the mess and getting comments like, "Serious?  This is not bad.  This looks like most homes."  Whew!  I needed to save a little dignity for the obvious negligence on the safety of my home.  
The person who came in, did so by jumping my fence after a long hike through fields, walked up to my door, opened it, and simply let themselves in.  From there...nothing.  As of this moment, I can't see that anything was taken, moved, or even added!  The cops said sometimes when it's someone on drugs, they go for food.  Nope.  But I might take a double inventory of my refrigerator and pantry tomorrow.

While Farrah and I made jokes to lighten things up because our adrenaline was on overload, it was completely unnerving seeing those footprints go from my fence and stomp all the way to my door to which that person felt it was okay to simply walk in.  It was a holiday for most people...we could've been home!  Then what?  

But the joking around made us both feel better like, "They probably saw the self-help books and figured...nah, it would be cruel to take something from someone with this many books."  Or, "They hung up a painting that isn't even a quarter of the way finished (Farrah's) and they don't even have their coo-coo clock wound up - what's wrong with these people?"  And of course, "Ummm, there really isn't anything here I want or need.  I'm just going to go.  But I'll leave a clue...the open front door."
Honestly, had they not left the door open, I would never have known there was someone in my house.

There are funnier things that went through my head and were discussed with friends, but some of which I'm just too tired to mention nor do I feel I want to share tonight.  The adrenaline has died down, the headache kicked in over an hour ago, and I'm exhausted.

Farrah is sleeping with me, the porch light is on, other lights are on, and the dog is in the room with us.  But my dog has barked three times since the incident and since the cops left and each time my adrenaline spikes and I'm not sure if I need to grab a weapon.

And even though I checked every door and window 10 times before Farrah fell asleep...I checked another 10 times, since.

Farrah said it correctly, "They saw my pictures.  I feel so...violated."  Even in a moment like that, I had to praise her on her vocabulary.  Very accurate.

So, how I see it - this person (who seems to have been a female), walked up to my porch after a hike, walked into my house without a care whether anyone was home or not since I had lights left on, then she walked across my living room to go out the front as a short cut to get through the community.  She literally took a stroll through my house.

Freakin' weird.

I apologize if this is a poorly written story, but I'm tired and still baffled by it all.  And now I have to sleep with the damn porch light on that beams into my room.  Awesome.  Thanks, asshole, for choosing my house.  As if I don't have other things to laundry.

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