dinsdag 12 augustus 2008
Yesterday, I awoke to the sound of gunshots and police sirens, though at the moment I didn't think they were shots, just a blown tire or something (must have been groggy - tires don't blow out 9 times, do they?) . But it turns out, just down the block.....MURDER!!....One of the very few positive things about living in Holland is I always felt rather safe. Even the one time someone attempted to mug me was laughable - he claimed to have a gun, I ignored him, pushed him aside and went on my way. However, even though I live in a "good" neighbourhood, I'm beginning to wonder what's going on. Last month, a plainclothes police agent was shot to death by a man who was driving erratically and was actually on the way to murder his girlfriend .... the NY Pizza place up the street was robbed at gunpoint .... a nightshop owner down the street was knifed to death during a robbery.... a boxer was shot dead and we heard the shots but didn't realize what it was until the papers came out the next day....and a year or so back, a family down the block was murdered in their flat (but the man had criminal ties, so I guess that's OK, right?)....all these things are happening within a kilometre of my home!! If this was happening in the US, I think I would be VERY nervous, but for some reason, even the close proximity of these events feels distant. This is a nice family neighbourhood, but for some reason, it seems much more violent and dangerous than the squalid centre of Amsterdam where we used to live. I'm still out every night walking the dog, tuned out of the world with my ipod playing old radio dramas from 70 years ago.