Yep, it happened. Nine days of residence and our car got broken into last night.
Well, we're assuming it was last night, because the car hasn't been used for a few days, what with the convenience of walking, trams just around the corner and the local train station and such. It was only when Love Chunks went to open the door this afternoon that he discovered that it was already unlocked.....
As my brother Rob, a long-time resident of North Melbourne advised us, "Hey, if you have to park out in the street, just assume that your car will be burgled. More than once. Quite often, in fact." We took him at his word and made sure that our car - certainly not a magnet itself for stealing being a dented, thirteen year old magna station wagon festooned with particularly determined spiderwebs outside and ancient pasty crumbs inside - had nothing of value in it.
At least, not to the thief concerned.
All he or she took was our first aid kit ("DRUGS! They wanted DRUGS!" Love Chunks calmly surmised) and LC's pocket knife ("They're MURDERERS!" I thought, but kept it to myself. After all, Sapphire was in the car). Surprisingly, they hadn't bothered to check the coin thingy by the ignition which would have yielded ten bucks in gold coins, or swiped my now rather large and colourful collection of shopping bags (numbering fifteen in seven different colours at last stocktake) or, thank-the-higher-power-I-think-exists-but-in-what-form-or-capacity-I-have-no-idea, the brand new Melways. And who'd have thought that the tape deck would still be intact, whew!
Sapphire noted our sombre expressions as we drove to Highpoint shopping centre. My opening remark, "Hey Love Chunks, your mate Greg reckons Highpoint should be re-named Knifepoint" perhaps wasn't the cleverest way to start our on-road conversation and we three sat in silence for a while.
Then Sapphire chirped: "Hey, at least they didn't take Wizzy, the guy I made out of my lolly wrapper during the drive from Adelaide." She laughed uproariously; clearly very amused at her capacity to lighten the moment which she in fact did extremely well. We can't really stop car thieves, so why worry?
It was with some degree of smugness that I noted that she'd taken my frequent lectures about us now living in an inner city suburb with haves and have-nots living closely together and anyone with a driveway is automatically classified as a millionare, to heart. Plus, seeing the Verb Cafe owner on Racecourse Road the other day having to shoo away several rather drunk bogans pestering outdoor diners for smokes while we were having lunch was a rather interesting way for Sapph to commence a Q&A session on where Broadmeadows is located and why the proprietor believes that the inebriated smokers should bloody well return there......
As for the car, it does make me wonder whether updating our matronly mitsubishi is worth it right now. Firstly, we always get a park directly in front of our house (thus removing my need to learn how to parallel park) and secondly, we only ever use her for big shopping trips or (future) weekends away. Perhaps we're better off disappointing car thieves and saving up for a decent holiday instead. Love Chunks is seriously contemplating sticking up a placard by the driver's door that says, 'If you think this car is junk, then you know that we don't have anything valuable in it either.'
Hopefully though, this Feng Shui thingy we bought at the Queen Victoria Markets does the trick for our house. The chap there told us it is for Protection and Health, and for seven dollars, I was willing to repress my doubts and give it a burl. He then gave Sapphire a tiny white cat with a tiny jingling bell inside for good luck and happiness. "Put it in your school bag and you'll be fine." He must have picked up on her uncertainty somehow and refused to let me pay for it. At the very least, he's cannily ensured himself some repeat business.
Feng shui has a much fairer chance of ensuring our immunity to thieves than Milly, the not-so-ferocious dog:
Her idea of savagery is to snap at blowflies so that she can get to Skipper the rabbit's droppings before they do. And we wouldn't have her any other way.