Saturday, 27 August 2011

Considering the reactions.

This evening, something occured which now seems a little stupid, but at the time seemed wholly upsetting. Isn't it odd how our reactions to things can be so diverse? Mine were- all in the space of a few hours. I've gone from one to the other tonight, having literally 'cooled down' in the process. Some will laugh when they read, (you can, don't feel guilty- I had a smile!) others will empathise, maybe somebody will be as outraged as I was initially. The interesting juxtaposition here is my initial reaction, with how I would have reacted a second and a third time- each different.

Imagine the scene if you will. This is like Poirot, but without the violence, happily, but also without the beautful period costumes, sadly.. I am at a loss for things to do, and I am avoiding paperwork, and okay its Friday night, which might be a friendly-kinda-rowdy in parts, but I might just go for a run... until I remember that I'm in my PJs. So instead, I'm in my garage, doing that thing I do, gently attacking something like this,

at about half speed, obviously.... (I'm still in the completely learning stage, and also, honestly, it says 'Allegro Molto', not 'Prestissississimo' or something. Whats the rush?)

And I can hear something, to my far right, outside. Although it has been raining lightly on and off since the afternoon, this isn't that kind of watery sound. It is another, unmistakable sound, and it is being sounded against my up-and-over door. I had heard people walk past already, probably between pubs, but hadn't realised that their convo had stopped, and somebody had paused just outside my property. What do I do? This is a bit like a sliding doors scenario- there is a small moment where my London 'walk-away' upbringing (where you don't even look partially intimidating people in the eye, let alone approach them), flickers up inside me, and then it goes. The more overwhelming urge is to go out there, interrupt him, and move them on, and probably, I envisage, they will run away fast, perhaps laughing.

So I go out there, catch him literally in the act, and shout 'What the hell are you doing?' His reaction? He chuckled, continued, and said 'I'm having a piss'. I retaliate: 'Stop it- *** off!' He says 'No'.

Now what? That wasn't what I was hoping would happen. I never expected him to carry on. This is the bit I have replayed in my head. In my updated version, I run in, dash into the back garden where a bucket of rainwater has been gathering, dash back out, and water him, liberally.
Then and there though, I really wanted to wipe the cheesy grin off his face- I was absolutely enraged. And he would hardly have expected it of me to retaliate physically, and it would have been so easy to do. Oh and I was angry- so upset and cross and shocked at the blatentness of it all.

Please note, I did *not* do this. I never touched him, guv.

So what I actually do, is look towards his two laughing mates, themselves the same sort of age and reasonable build, and quickly close the door. I hold the door shut, pushing myself up against it, trying to remember how to lock it without the key, because all of a sudden, out of nowhere, I felt incredibly vulnerable. There was nobody else outside to help me- none of the usual taxi drivers, who have been so supportive before, no neighbours, no other pub-goers.. and nobody else inside.

I did my good citizen thing, and made a very likely useless call to a local police switchboard. She diligently took down the description and the particulars, and on a positive note, it was a pleasure to deal with somebody who was totally efficient, and who put me at ease. Our taxes are going somewhere useful in their training I feel.

So the other oddity of situations like this, enraging ones, vulnerable ones,  bloody-good-shock ones, is that you can never get hold of anybody to chat too, to calm down about it. Nobody answered their phones when I came home from a routine abdo scan, with the news that I was unexpectedly a tiny bit pregnant 6 years ago, and nobody answered their phones (initially- bless the lovely friend that did come to my aid though,) when I had a bad shock and ran from someone and hurt my hand a while back- I just wanted to talk too fast for a loved one to understand, and cry down the phone for a bit. Similarly, nobody responded to texts this evening (I knew the parents were in, but didn't fancy worrying them).

I mentioned about the scale of anger- and my reactions if I had have dealt with it a second time that evening. It happened around 8.30, and around 9.00 I'd have done the bucket thing... in fact I sploshed some floor cleaner and water around the outside of the garage after my visitor, as you do... and left some water in the bucket by the front door just in case. He didn't show. Good- maybe the strong arm of the Friday Night Law did catch up with him before he hopped on his bus. Saddo.
By 10, I was beginning to smile about it. And I was a little taken aback by the actions of this feisty girl, all alone, protecting her property, and her Faure induced peace. Maybe she did the right thing, but at 10pm, I would have popped upstairs, closed the curtains and made myself a cuppa. Yes-the garage is where I escape from the world, into my own one, and to have somebody insult it like that was upsetting, but I was daft to confront them. Its also a pretty ridiculous thing to happen, that could probably only happen to me... hence the slight grin, its just my luck- and it is stupid!

I'm not sure what the end of the story is. I'm going to bed, and I'm going to stop mulling it over- maybe thats the conclusion. I feel lighter about it, by a bit, but my lovely evening was rudely broken. Its odd- I was abroad when the 'London' Riots, as they were referred to then, were going on. When it started spreading to other areas, I thought that that kind of behaviour was for cities, and that those sorts of thugs, with their beligerance and rulebreaking, and lawlessness, could never 'belong' where I live, with its rural charm and villagey-pride. They never did reach us, but now I realise that there isn't much of a boundary. People are people. Nobody rioted and put lives and livelihoods in danger outside my house tonight, but they weren't country mice either. I guess I've just realised that you only get away for so long, with living in peace, before somethng like this happens... even if I never thought that it was at all possible, in my beautiful Here.


PS- sorry for the subject matter, but I do like to share! ;) Thank you for reading my little blog, nice posts and sad ones. I mentioned my disappointment in my last post, at not being able to sit down yet,  and catch up here, and write those 'Dear Diary, I had a fab holiday' entries. But my weekend plans have changed, so I'm a little more likely to be able to catch up with my Bloggy World than I thought, give or take some paperwork. I'll be back soon, I hope, with happy tales from my Summer, plans for September, and maybe even a cake recipe too.


  1. That's not very nice behaviour at all. Not the sort of thing you expect in a nice little town like yours. I can easily understand why you would have been shocked and upset. Some people just have no manners. They're just yobs. Take care and stay safe. Hugs xxx

  2. oh, I hate the sudden feeling of vulnerability. What a horrid incident for you to have to deal with.
    I know I'm one for thinking things over and having different reactions too. Usually when put on the spot I'm struck dumb and only think of what I should have said/done later.
    In general its sad that so many people are so selfish and thoughtless. Society really has took a downward slump in morality.

  3. Oh horrible :( I can totally understand your being worked up about it - I would have been too. What an awful breach of your privacy and disrecpect to your property. And what makes me angry is that if you'd have opened the door and been a bloke you probably would have got the reaction you first expected. Glad you can laugh about it, don't know if I would be able to so soon! xx

  4. Oh that's just gross! I'm glad you're able to have a giggle about it. I'd probably still be gibbering incoherently about how dirty it was of him!

  5. Oh I hear you. I have had the same dilemma out the back of our house. I'm still working on how to deal with the situation when it occurs. I like the bucket of water idea, though. They literally take the p***!