Well, I have been robbed. Twice now, in the last 6 months. Really put a damper on doing creative stuff for a while as I cleaned up, both the physical and mental debris. Of those two, the latter is definitely the worse. I can live, to a degree, with losing stuff, even the sentimental stuff, like my father’s old 35mm camera, or the antique stopwatch an ex bought me for animation work, engraved with our (now defunct) email usernames. The more recent things, like the antique typewriter (pictured) that someone had just given me because I was looking for a satisfying old typewriter to work with. Even what I eventually tallied up to several thousand dollars in tools and hardware.
The real pain was the loss of a sense of security in my private workspace. It had been violently invaded. Stuff I used or valued casually grabbed and stuffed in a bucket (also stolen) and left.
I got to watch this time (the second robbery) as all the security cameras I had installed did their job and got very good video of most of the thieves. I just hadn’t set the notifications to alert me.
The thieves seem to have a pretty methodical style. First. Someone comes by in what I presume is a stolen SUV, and just casually backs it through the front of he space. In the first robbery it was the garage door, where I do the woodworking and all the power tools are (were), the second robbery they went right through the glass storefront into my office space. In both episodes, I was the last door opened. The guy got out of the truck, entered and scanned the place and left. About an hour later separate groups of thieves showed up to actually take stuff. Presumably alerted to a wide open place by the guy in the truck, but in a completely deniable fashion…
In ones and twos, 4-5 people came in and wandered around grabbing whatever looked salable. all the early ukuleles I built that were here, a guitar/banjo I built, another guitar I had bought some years ago. A rather nice multimeter I’d bought years ago for some electronics projects, Some of the tools I had bought to replace the set from the last robbery. A unicycle. My nice scissors.
I don’t think I’ll ever have a full accounting of what was stolen. I doubt I’ll ever recover the stuff or the value, even though two of them were subsequently identified, arrested, and charged.
Since New Years, I haven’t slept a lot. The paranoia has kept me awake, when the camera alerts haven’t. The garage door has been replaced, we’re still a couple months from getting the storefront glass back. The landlord has installed some bollards in front of the windows and doors to lessen the ability to drive a vehicle through them.
I’ll have been in this space for 10 years come July. This place has always been a haven. I’ve been able to escape some of the worst moments here. But then the worst broke in.
On the brighter side, my painting is improving, and I’ve started a new batch of ukulele, so more news to come.