As I sit typing this in me attic, an alarm is tearing the air to shreds outside. It sounds like a house alarm - one of those relentless WOWOWOWOWOWOWOW air-raid siren type affairs that are like a three minute warning for impending Armageddon. Except this warning has been going on for about twenty minutes now, giving Armageddon plenty of time to rumble down upon us, wreak it's merry havoc and depart for the next planet, leaving a charred and devastated wasteland in it's intergalactic wake. Obviously no-one is paying the slightest bit of attention. I've just glanced outside expecting to see a fleet of emergency vehicles and a crowd of aghast on-lookers being shepherded behind police lines, but there's no-one there except a middle aged woman walking her dog, seemingly oblivious to the cacophony raging around her. Even the dog doesn't seem alarmed. No-one gives a flying fuck about neighbourhood distress signals. Whoever invented Neighbourhood Watch obviously discounted the act of listening as any sort of aid to local security vigilance.
He'll probably have time to curl up on the couch and read a couple of good novels before making good his escape.
And still this bastard noise goes on and on. If the house is actually being burgled I imagine the intruder has had time to strip the place of valuables, pack his van up, park it safely round the corner, return to the scene of his crime and cook himself a three course meal followed by a long luxurious soak in the bath. He'll probably have time to curl up on the couch and read a couple of good novels before making good his escape. There was a time when you could leave your back door unlocked. Now you might as well leave it unlocked and left wide open. At least you wont annoy the neighbours when you get turned over.
I'm just as much to blame as anyone for this uncaring descent into wilful ignorance that's picking apart our very social fabric. But I have an excuse. I know who's house alarm has gone off. It's the bloke across the road. And I know for a fact it's not a burglar. It's his cat. It keeps setting the alarm off by going in and out the cat-flap. He is seemingly unwilling to get his alarm looked at, so I think it's down to me as a good neighbour to help solve his problem.
Now where did I put that air rifle?