Marigolds in my patio (Hawaii).
Crime in New York City got to me. I was in the bedroom when I heard the sound of my dining table being dragged. Dashing into the living room, I saw a man reach through the barred window, grab my purse, and run up the fire escape. I couldn’t believe anyone could be so daring. The police came and found my purse in a trash can, my money gone. My apartment was broken into on two other occasions. The final blow came on a pay day when a man whipped out a gun and robbed me in an elevator.
That incident broke my will to remain in New York. After seven adventurous, romantic, and risk-taking years abroad (living in California, Thailand, Europe and New York), I was tired and homesick. In all those years away, I’d vacationed in Hawaii for only a week. My parents had begged me to return for good, but I’d told them I wasn’t ready. Now, I was.
Moving back to Hawaii, I was immediately surrounded by friends and relatives — making me wonder why I ever left. Having lived and worked around the world, I can truly say Hawaii is the best place to live.
However, there is crime in Hawaii, also. One night, a concert I attended ended late. The buses had stopped running so I started walking to my parents’ home. As soon as I turned the corner to my street, I heard running footsteps. Then I felt an arm around my waist and a hand on my mouth. I screamed loudly and shrilly. Startled, the man dropped his hands and took off down the street. I was afraid he’d circle the block and attack me again, so I hurried to the nearest house and asked if I could call my father. After telling Dad about the assault and how afraid I was to walk the short distance to our home, he picked me up in his car.
Women who have never been victimized might not share my occasional feelings of paranoia and insecurity. But it certainly helps to be married to a tall, brawny man and I haven’t been robbed or assaulted since our marriage. I feel safe with David.