ok…so… when I was a single gal, living in my 2 up 2 down cottage in a certain part of SE London (The Captain refers to it as “The Getto” to the point where he was afraid to park outside my house in case someone stole his car/hub caps/alloys/dignity), I had NO alarm, no proper locks on my back/front door, no real security, in my house. Hell, I left my car door unlocked and no one ever broke in! ok, it was a Hyundai Accent and really who wants a few crappy R n B cassettes (yep, not even a CD player) and a Pepsi can holder.
And yet, I went to bed every night (ok, albeit with my trustee Hockey stick wedged between a wall and my bedroom door) and slept well. Now… the back of my house had an alley-way to a train (& tram station to East Croydon) station (easy access for any Murderer/thief/good for nothing asshole intent on breaking/ruining some innocent persons life), the front door of my cottage had ONE bolt and a glass front door. that was it. Also, my neighbour (and my housemate can vouch for me on this)… had prostitutes at his house at least 3 nights a week. We know because we listened with a glass to the wall out of sheer amazement….plus I think there was some sort of wierd “Silence of the Lambs” sexual thing going on as he played weird music and we heard screaming. BUT, girls always left his place alive (we checked) so he was just…erm…odd.
Anyhow, thats where I lived. thats what I could afford.
I then moved to a safe apartment block in NW London when I met the Captain. You needed a key or a Caretaker to get in, there were cameras and gates EVERYWHERE. Plus, there was one entrance (after 2 initial glass door security checks (I’m amazed our eye balls and finger prints weren’t taken in hindsight) and we had one back door onto a tiny patio that only James Bond, or possibly Santa Claus, could access. Or, in our case, we had some fabulous party girls (3 Italians) who loved a party right next door (they threw a fab Chav party that we joined after climbing over our balcony at 2am!). One in particular, who I was convinced fancied the Captain, left me a note the day they moved, telling me how she felt about me (proper lesbo stylie). I liked her too and could have been swayed… but, hey, I was involved with the Captain… and he has a massive peenars!
Anyhow…why was i more afraid there? A block with all that security. Any sound in the middle of the night, when I was on my own…. well… lets just say… it scared the freakin crap out of me.
When we moved into our house….well…. it’s not a joke but I had to pay people (our neighbours, who btw holiday very well and I was hoping they would adopt me, were away in Miami… so their Nanny/Help was free). I’m mortified to say, I called her one evening and offered her £35 to sleep over as protection. She literally came over at 10pm, slept and left in the morning. No tea, breakfast, child minding. I paid for peace of mind and in my head… and extra pair of hands if some bastard broke in and hurt my kids.
The Captain couldn’t understand why I was so afraid. The area had security driving around all night. they knew to watch our house. they also knew my brother (a big 5ft 11 arab looking Al Qaeda type looking (not an official dick who believes in that bull shit) was also there to babysit while the Captain got life settled here in Hong Kong. While Captain was away, I moved the twins into my room,, locked our bedroom door (I also had a panic alarm installed by my side of the bed) and every night…I’d be half asleep (one eye open) …. waiting for some bastard to break in and destroy my entire life.
Why the fear? When I was approx 5 years old, my parents were robbed (badly…tied up … the whole works) while we were at schoool. I remember coming home to see my Dad (a real softie with me, but a hardarse in business), crying. They had cut our front door in half to get in, tied both my parents up, taken everything… and then a week later, these filthy dirty stealing bastards rang my Dad to SELL everything back to him, bit by tiny bit. BASTARDS. My parents, who are not into this underworld crap, told them to keep it all. They were afraid for us (these people threatened to come to our schools and take us… and in the 80’s…. they weren’t that great on security at home time). My parents to this day say, “we just wanted them gone” even if it meant losing a lot of sentimental stuff like an old ring given by a great great grandmother that some asshole probably gave to his pikey niece for her 10th birthday.
So, my fear was always there. Dont trust anyone who comes into your home (it turns out, it was someone who had been over a couple of times to give a quote of fitting a kitchen). If they think you have cash in the house (at the time, my Dad ran a Restaurant and brought the takings home every night), you’re fucked. Old Scotland yard (apparently very different to the new one…dont ask me why but I listen to my dad’s tales of the “olden days”), pushed to get these guys. they knew who they were. But as my dad said, “I cant risk them coming into my home again and sawing down my front door, in broad day light. Especially when my Son arrived home minutes later as they ran out.” These idiots also got it so wrong, they broke into the wrong apartment of a newly wed couple and cleaned them out first. Poor gits but … thats life right. I believe in karma. The last I heard, one of the guys that did the robbery was killed in Paris back in 199? during some random “mugging”.
I dont trust any one. Now in Hong Kong, I lock all doors. I double-check all doors are locked. then I re-check all doors are locked. Sooo what happens the first night we have our new Domestic Goddess Helper? She forgot to lock the back door AND our Cousin, who was staying the same evening, pressed the panic alarm in the apartment (thinking it was a light switch….genius). So at 4am…… our apartment had security ringing the door, people going nuts trying to locate who had broken in…and all along (I had opted to sleep on the sofa in our living room (very open plan and you have to pass it for the kitchen, nursery, loo, front door etc) as our cousin was here one night after travelling for weeks. He slept with the Captain (yes, a boy and they are like brothers but I wanted to be near the nursery and as my twin wake a lot, it wasnt really fair on him to be woken all night). Anyhowsle….. this ONE night. Our new helper and our guest both fucked up. Our Cousin pressed the security bell, thinking it was a light switch (I had taken him out earlier for 4 bottles of red wine so you cant really blame him) and our new helper, didnt lock the back door… which, as it turns out, security checks every door in the building, every single night (love that!).
At approx 4am on said evening, as I slept in the middle of our sitting room, door bells going, alarms going off, people in/out….. I slept through the ENTIRE fucking thing. THAT is how tired I must be. I had approx 5 people stood in my lounge, next to the sofa I slept on, discussing who pressed which alarm etc… and I didnt open an eyelid. Did I smoke a spliff? No (for a start… i cant find a bloody dealer in this whole town). Did I take a Valium/sleeping pill/painkiller/something?! Nope. I was just tired because I have TWINS!