The finale to this year’s Symphony season was a memorable one, though not for the reason they’d planned. The last program looked interesting; a short piece by contemporary American composer, Nico Muhly, a Liszt concerto and a Prokofiev symphony. We usually go to Thursday evening performances but last Thursday turned out to be a hectic day so I swapped those tickets for Saturday night. So, last night, we get all spruced up to look we belong at a cultural event and head downtown for a cocktail at a favorite local watering hole followed by the 8:00 PM concert.
At 7:58 we’re in our seats, the orchestra are in their seats, and I am in the process of turning off my iPhone, which was happily already on silent, when I receive an incoming call. I step outside the Hall as the lights are going down to hear; “This is operator #72 at Blah Blah Security. An alarm was activated at your home by the family room motion detector. Since no one was at home when called we have dispatched the police”. Having recently had a burglary at Casa de Harper, I was probably more concerned than I might otherwise have been but I remained calm. I went back into the Hall and stood in the back until the first piece ended. During the applause, I grabbed Harper’s Other Dad and we were off. I guess after two failed attempts we were not destined to hear Prokofiev this season.
It is about a 30 minute drive home from Symphony Hall, considerably less last night. While in route, we get a call from a neighbor. “Your alarm is going off!” She is a terrific neighbor and one of the emergency contacts with our alarm company so she already had as much information as we did. The police were not there yet. About 20 minutes later, we turn the corner in front of our house to find three of our neighbors standing in the middle of the street in front of our home, two police cars at the curb and two of Phoenix’s P.D. officers standing in our driveway. They said they’d been around the house and could not see any signs of entry. That’s good news!
I unlock the door and walk into the house followed closely by the two uniformed officers and Harper’s Other Dad. Hearing our voices, in bounds the Harper Girl; all smiles and tail wags. Apparently Harper decided to go wandering around the house in our absence and set off the motion detector. Either that, or she invited some of her cronies from the Dog Park over to party while the folks are away and they all bailed when they heard the cops had been called. (I just know some of those bitches have records!). I can’t prove it. Even the cops couldn’t get anything out of Harper. She’s saying nothing.
This has never happened before. It is possible that we latched her kennel door inadequately and she squirmed out. She’s done that before but never with these consequences. In all honesty, however, I think she was probably in her kennel while we preparing to leave and we left, both thinking the other one had latched the door. The police were very nice. They did not make me feel bad about having to respond to a false alarm.
I have many thoughts in the wake of this incident
- I am glad it was not an actual burglary. Been there. Done that.
- I was worried that Harper might be traumatized. When the alarm goes off it is LOUD and she would have been in the house, alone, with it going off more more than 30 minutes. Happily she seems none the worse for the experience.
- I am annoyed with the alarm company. They gave the police the wrong address so they responded to an address a couple blocks away. The officers finally found our home by doing a reverse directory search on our home phone number. The police were nice about it. The seemed anxious that we understand why it took so long to arrive. They also advised me to follow up with the alarm company on Monday to ensure they correct their records. You can bet I will be chatting with my pal Operator #72 or one of her colleagues on Monday. They’ve never had a problem finding our address to send out the bill.
- Unlike my recent comments about our plumber and A/C technician, having uniformed policemen come your home, aside from the occasion, of course, could easily be everything the porn movies suggest. Oh my! Neither was a big, burly type, actually they looked liked frat boys in bulletproof vests. That notwithstanding, I don’t know if it was the Kevlar, the guns, or what. Whatever it was, it was working. And one of them bore an uncanny resemblance to friend of ours. That was a little distracting.
In the end all was well. Casa de Harper and all within are safe and sound. I apologized to the officers for the inconvenience and
invited them in for a cocktail and a swim thanked them for their work. I apologized and schmoozed with the neighbors for a while. The folks across the street are new to the neighborhood and this gave us a chance to get better acquainted.
We’ve identified a problem with the alarm company that should be easy to correct.
Our next door neighbor realized she no longer has a key to our house. That’s easy to fix too.
Most importantly, Harper was fine. She was bouncing around with a big smile from all the attention. At least that’s the explanation I choose to believe for her smile….. but I just know those ex-con bitches from the Dog Park had a paw in this somehow.