Friday, June 24, 2005

So, That Was a Little Scary

Every once in awhile, we get strange visitors on our doorstep. At 1:30 a.m.

The first time, it was this lady I had run into on the street a week (in daylight) or two prior. She had told me some wholly unbelievable story about how she locked herself out of her house and called the cops, and they tried to bust in to her place, but were unsuccessful, and now she was taking to the streets to gather enough money to buy a new key. I was so irritated with the non-believability of her story that I didn't give her anything. I mean, even those, "Hey, I was on my way to Santa Cruz and dude, I just ran out of gas!" stories have a ring of plausibility.

(Funny aside: my grandmother was approached by one of those guys at a gas station, and I'm not sure if she gave him money or not, but the following week, she was approached by the same guy telling the same story and she said, "You're still here? You must be having a very hard time collecting enough money!")

The second time, it was around 1:30 a.m. She knocked on the door, and of course, Nabby went nuts. I peeked out the window to see who it was. Her back was to the door, and from that angle, she resembled my neighbor, so I opened it. Otherwise, I never would have. She turned around, and it was Lying About the Key lady. Her story this time is that the city had just turned off her gas, so her house had no heat. She and her grandchildren were driving around looking for money (I saw no car, but she said it was around the corner) so they could go pay the city and have their heat back. Again, I say, at 1:30 a.m. I had to hand it to her for sheer inventiveness. She asked if my neighbor's car was my car. I said no, and she left. I've since learned that she's gone to other houses telling similarly insane stories.

Last night, the Mr. and I were reading in bed when someone began pounding on our door. It seriously rattled the house. It's times like this I reallyreallyreally love having Nabby, because I like to believe her bark sounds bigger and more ferocious than she is. Especially when it's the "I was just starting to doze off, and you woke me, jerk" bark. The Mr. jumped up to see what was going on, and I hid in bed. Those are our respective jobs. And if he's not going to kill bugs, the least he could do is face off potential burglars. He started to go down the stairs, but instead came back (I didn't ask him, but it had to have been instinct to do that) and looked outside our bathroom window (which faces the street) and some guy was standing on our sidewalk holding up a cigarette as though he wanted a light. Oh, of course. Whenever I need something random, say a corkscrew, and it's the middle of the night, I go around and knock on people's doors. They understand. Boy, I wish there were some 24-hour convenience stores or something.

I don't think I need to tell you we didn't open the door. I'm still kind of spooked. Something about the knock -- it was so aggressive and unecessarily loud. It wasn't a "Say, I'm sorry to wake you, but do you have a light?" knock. Not that we would have opened up for that, either. The Mr. travels for work a lot, and I'm often here alone (although, thankfully, not for the next 3 weeks or so).

Good thing we have an alarm, and I'm going to start sleeping with the hammer again, too.