If you read, watch TV, or go to the movies, then at some point you’ve heard a horror story about someone, usually a woman, having been roofied – violated without their consent, or even knowledge, and only learning about it much later when the annoying little clues just pile up to the point they can no longer be ignored. Well I’ve just discovered that something uncomfortably similar to that has happened to me.
Now before anyone jumps to the wrong conclusion, let me just say that I have not been raped and in no way do I mean to compare what’s happened to me to a woman having been raped. Nevertheless, what has happened has left me feeling more exposed and vulnerable than I have felt since I escaped my old life in the “hood” over four years ago.
I have to admit that this whole thing is also quite embarrassing and I’m extremely uncomfortable even writing about it. But my writing is about the only therapeutic outlet I have these days so, if you’ll allow me a little “lead up” to help explain how such a thing could even happen at all, I will continue – as I need so very much to do.
Okay, so I’ve talked about my isolated lifestyle many, many times on this blog. I’ve described how, with exceptions only for my weekly trips to the grocery store and to take out the trash, I almost never leave my apartment. What I’ve never said is that, out of the 99% of my life spent in my apartment, 99% of that time is spent in my bedroom, where both my TV and my PC are. Beyond preparing my food, washing my clothing. and using the toilet facilities, I hardly use the rest of my two bedroom apartment at all.
Perhaps my first clue should have been the cricket that’s been making a racket somewhere downstairs for the last two or three nights. Perhaps I should have thought more about the fly I swatted on my monitor last night. After all, these things can’t just crawl or fly through closed and locked doors and windows. And alarms should have most definitely gone off in my head when I finally noticed this afternoon that my back door was slightly ajar.
But they did not. I am, after all, a very absent minded kind of guy who’s always got way too much on his mind. So, while it was disturbing to think that I’d actually left the door open and unlocked for God knows how many days since I last took the trash out, it certainly wasn’t inconceivable that I had done so. But when it got hot enough for me to turn on the A/C again, after two days with temperatures low enough to do without it, I had to raise my shades enough to close my window – and discover the big, almost perfectly square flap cut into the screen of the window beside that mysteriously open back door.
Someone had actually broken into my apartment while I was in it, most likely while I was asleep in my bed, and I’ll probably never even know exactly when it happened…
If there is anything like a “silver lining” in all of this, it’s my imagining the surprise my would-be burglar (or burglars) got when they realized that there was absolutely nothing in my apartment to justify taking the big risk they took by breaking in. The things of most value to me, my TV, my PC and my books, are all upstairs where I spend all of my time.
The only things downstairs that are light enough to easily cart off are an old clock/radio/telephone, and old vacuum cleaner, an old microwave, and my coffee maker. Every single one of those things are still there, right where I left them. In fact, I didn’t find where anything was missing at all. Some big score, right?
But they did take a couple of very valuable things with them when they left – my sense of security and my peace of mind – at least what little of them I had left…
I want ice water.
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