Wednesday, March 7, 2012

SMALL TOWN SENSE OF SECURITY SHAKEN

St. Bernard's at dawn
Imagine my surprise tonight to see my sister-in law, and a few cousins, on the NTV News reacting to a crime spree in my little home town of St. Bernard's - Jacques Fontaine.

I had not had an opportunity to speak with my parents before supper, so the story came as a great surprise to me when I read one of Pam Pardy-Ghent's Twitter posts about the story.

My wife has always been on my case about leaving the car doors unlocked overnight when ever we go home for a visit. She used to give me an equally hard time over the old summer house down there. naive or not, folks do not lock-up much. When I am visiting home, I revert to this carefree and secure mode. You will learn she says.

Jacques Fontaine gut
I figure this sense of security originates from living in a tight nit community, where if someone needs something, they borrow it.  It always comes back. People have each others back and the thought of robbing your neighbors would never occur.  People still depend and trust each other. Sure they will have the scattered falling out, but they are loyal to one another, almost  to a fault.Ony a dirty bird fouls his own nest.

It is a safe environment. There is that small town spirit, peace and security. It is is place where all  of the faces passing by on the road are recognizable...a place where people can walk to work and church...a place where housing is affordable, a place where people actually know one anothers' names,  a place where the largest crowds are at in church pews or card games, and doors are often left unlocked.



When I lived out in Fort Amherst, at the entrance to St. John's Harbour,  the outport feel of the place offered me a similar sense of security. For the decade that resided out there, I never locked my doors. Nothing was ever stolen or vandalized .

My dad & Aunt Jose
It would appear that a trio of young men from Marystown drove down over the road targeting  unlocked vehicles for valuables in the wee hours of Monday morning. Over a dozen trucks and cars were robbed. The thieves were looking for GPS units, iPods and other valuables that they could hawk easily for drug money.

An alert resident contacted the RCMP and than put together a small pose of residents who blocked the road out of the community, preventing the bandits from making an escape. The gang was latter arrested by the RCMP.

Interestingly enough, the arrest and road block occurred in my Great Aunt Josephine's drive-way. Well into her 90's, she is the last of my dad's uncles and aunts.  I hope she slept through the commotion.

Residents believed that  they are quite safe, but as people are now learning the hard way, the truth is something different. What if these idiots had darker intentions besides robbing a few vehicles. What were they doing in Aunt Josie's driveway. She does not drive or have a car?

What if? They're the kind of personal security questions people in my hometown aren't used to asking, until the serenity of small town life was interrupted in the wee hours of the morning.

Reality really sucks!


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