I think it was the underwear drawer that will stick with me the longest. I have been made aware that a good many people use such a location to hide very important or valuable items. I don't. Unless you count underwear as a very important or valuable item. Nonetheless, the person or persons who broke into our house the other night while we were away chose to toss my boxers and briefs around the bedroom in a vain attempt to locate the good stuff.
They took TVs. They took a computer monitor, mouse, and keyboard. They took some cash. They took my son's video game system and the blanket off his bed to cover it all. Like my underwear, I'm sure that it's the blanket that bothers him most. That made it more personal. That made it a violation.
That's what the officer talked with us about, in between writing down the serial numbers of the missing items and apologizing for the agonizingly slow response. We live in Oakland. Things get broken, stolen and shot all the time, and with budget cuts, there aren't enough police to keep up with all the things that are broken, stolen, and shot. Nothing was bleeding at our house, so we waited our turn.
While we waited we counted all the things that weren't taken. They took the TVs but left the cables to connect them. They took the monitor, but left the computer. The broke into our house, but all of us were safe and sound when it was all over. That was the relief that spread over me from almost the instant that we came in the front door and noticed all that space where our stuff used to be. Here was my wife, there was my son, and coming out from the back bedroom was our dog: all accounted for and ready to start the work of putting our lives back in order. Starting with that underwear drawer.