Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Car Thievery On My Mind

Those of you who have been reading my blog for some time probably remember the stolen car incident that happened right about this time last year. It's safe to say that November 15, 2006, was one of the worst days in my entire life. More than just losing property, it was the feeling of having the veneer of safety and security in your daily life cruelly ripped away.

But the car was miraculously recovered, and I gradually moved past the incident. At some point, I even started expecting to see my car in the parking lot after work, instead of holding my breath and anticipating an eerily empty parking spot where I'd left my vehicle that morning. I thought I had moved on.

Except, I'm still working in the same building. Every weekday morning, I still drive down the street where my car had been parked when it was stolen. Sometimes I take a moment to look at the spot where it was stolen from, sometimes I don't even think about it. But either way, it's still right there.

And then yesterday morning, the building was abuzz with talk of multiple cars getting broken into over the weekend. By the afternoon, I'd heard that another car had been stolen. It made me feel helpless and once again convinced that when I left the building, my car would be gone.

Here's the part that really bothers me: If I had my car stolen, and continued to do everything the same as before, then some might argue that I deserve to have it stolen again. "Deserve" may be a little strong, but at the very least, I shouldn't be surprised to see the same outcome.

But I don't do everything the same. I bought a Club (although I'm not convinced of its effectiveness, it makes me feel like I'm being proactive). And most importantly, I now pay a not-insignificant monthly fee for the privilege and security of parking in a fenced, gated lot behind the building.

You would think that makes me feel better. And occasionally it does. But not when the gate has been CONTINUOUSLY OPEN for the past 5 days, as has been the case for the past week. So I think the car thieves and vandals may have realized it's not all that secure. But what else can I do? I like the people I work with. I don't really want to find another job. I also don't want to be constantly worried that my car will, once again, ride off into the sunset without me. Everyone tells me a car has never actually been stolen from the fenced parking lot. But there's a first time for everything, isn't there?

Here's hoping I don't discover that I'm the first when I leave work today ....


bren said...

Gosh people are terrible aren't they? I mean... I've not had my car stolen any time recently. The only car I DID have stolen had a hidden switch for the petrol pump, so the thieves only got 200m down the road before stopping and running for it.

But... I've had cars broken into and stuff stolen or people hitting my car and damaging it and driving off all too many times. And every time it's been while in Wellington (our capital city where I currently work). To be fair, it right pisses me off. These people have NO IDEA how violated you feel afterwards and how experiences like yours continue to haunt us afterward. Wankers.

And surely... if you're paying for a gated park you could DEMAND that they close the gate for you?

M. Lubbers said...

Bren: Sorry to hear that you can identify so well with my plight. I wouldn't wish that sense of violation (good word for it) on my worst enemy!

I was actually surprised to hear such an outburst from you. I thought everyone in New Zealand knew each other and were friendly and likeable people!;) I mean, I knew that couln't be the case for *everyone*, but that's my general perception on this side of the world. It seemed like such an idyllic place to live!

But on the bright side: My car was still there yesterday, AND they put in a new gate-closing mechanism, so I have high hopes it will work for more than a day or so. Fingers crossed!

Bren said...

Heheh nah it's actually quite surprising how segregated we are at times! We've had a whole bunch of fuss in the media recently about so-called homeland "terrorists" too. Bunch of Maori activists who apparently have been using Al Qaeda training manuals and (illegal in NZ without the right license) automatic weapons to plan an uprising against the government and the "whitey". All rather scary, although details are VERY sketchy! More details on Wikipedia if you are so inclined.

And yes theres a lot of popular misconceptions about NZ. There's actually 4 million ppl here so I haven't got around to meeting them all yet. Back when it was a little over 3 million we used to have 60 million sheep in the country (not sure how many we have now!!). I managed to convince a great number of Americans that we got 20 sheep each when we were born... and that big families were uncommon as you'd need a lot of land for 10 peoples sheep. ;)

Good to hear your car parking is sorted and thanks for the comment on my site!

M. Lubbers said...

Ahh, taking advantage of us gullible Americans, are you?

I'll go check out your link to Wikipedia shortly. Thanks for bringing me up to speed on Kiwi culture;)