Hello Helicopter Pilot

I reckon helicopter pilots would get to see a lot of interesting things. I think one saw me naked. Well…semi naked.

A few Saturday nights ago I was soaking in the tub when I heard the neighbours dogs barking furiously. They bark from time to time, but on this occasion, I took notice because I’d noticed that week that the neighbour husband was away, leaving only the neighbour wife and little girl.

So after hearing the dogs bark, I heard what I could only describe as a clamour over our fence, a few footsteps and a grunt as the owner of those feet presumably tripped on our enormous pile of weeds and garden refuse.

I froze. I didn’t want to make a sound. Mostly so I could listen, but also because in that moment when you realise there is a stranger on your property late at night while you’re naked in the bath you suddenly feel rather vulnerable.

I listened. There were no more sounds, and so while that indicated the most likely the person was just running through and all was well, I still had thoughts going through my head along the lines of

“If a burglar is about to break in, I’d better get dressed,” and

“Maybe I should just lie here and hope the burglar doesn’t find me,” but that thought was quickly replaced with more rational thoughts about my children and doing something sensible like waking my husband.

So I got out of the bath as quietly as possible and dashed to our room with just a towel around me that didn’t cover nearly as much as I’d have liked. I leaned over sleeping husband and whispered:

“D!” pause

“D! Honey, you’d better wake up. I think there’s someone outside!”

“huh?”

“I think there’s someone outside. I was in the bath and I heard someone out the back. I heard the dogs bark and footsteps.”

“Huh? What…”

“You need to wake up. I heard someone outside. I think someone climbed over our fence. But I think they’re gone now, but I thought I should tell you”

“What do you want me to do?”

“I dunno. I just thought I should tell you. ”

“You need to tell me what you want me to do.”

“Maybe you could have a look around”

“Where?”

“I dunno, just outside somewhere and see if there’s anything to see. Maybe we should check on -neighbours- and see if everything is ok. I think -neighbour wife- is home alone. Maybe I should ring them. OK, I’ll ring them and see if they’re ok”

So while D slowly recovered consciousness from deep sleep, I rang the neighbour and left a message on their answering machine. That seemed a little silly, and still does in retrospect, but still I told them I’d just heard someone running from their property, and that I’d send D around to check it out.

Now that I’d offered D’s services to our neighbours on his behalf I had to tell him to go and check it out ask him if he thought it was a good idea to check out the neighbours house. By now all was quiet and nothing seemed out of the ordinary. He went out the front of our house, and suddenly I was worried for him, so I half followed (still in the towel) with the phone in hand ready to call an ambulance if he happened to get a bump on the head or something while confronting burglars. the police if anything looked suspicious.

As he arrived back to me, we both heard the sound of the police helicopter circling in the vicinity. Ooooh, now it was getting exciting and I wanted to be in on it. as helpful as possible, so I called the police to report what I’d heard. They didn’t tell me anything. The lady asked for our address details and within a minute, the helicopter was circling overhead. We went and stood out on the back deck to watch and I commented to D that it was pretty silly sending a helicopter to find someone running on foot in the middle of the night because it was so dark. He pointed out that they probably have military quality night vision cameras and could more than likely see in great detail.

So, there I was clad only in a towel standing out on our deck looking up at the helicopter. I wonder how many other people were disturbed mid bath that night.

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