Tag Archives: police

Thieves In The Night in Melbourne, Australia

If I seem a bit off my game for the next week, it’s because I am dealing with a very stressful situation right now. We’ve been burgled.

Sometime between Saturday night and early Sunday morning, someone broke into our garage and stole 2 of the 4 bikes in there — the most expensive ones — the customised Specialized road bike and mountain bike that Mark is out and about on several days each week. Not only that, they got all of the peripheral gear like the heart rate monitors, the bike repair kit, the brand new high-vis lights, the brand new pannier frame that only was installed this past week, and in Mark’s cycling bag was a digital camera which was also stolen. To add insult to injury, they left their ratty old bikes outside our garage as they rode away on Mark’s lovely bikes.


Mark and one of his STOLEN Specialized bikes

Mark and one of his STOLEN Specialized bikes


We are feeling quite gutted. The police came out from the St. Kilda Police Station to take fingerprints and they were lovely to deal with both in person and on the phone. But the likelihood of ever seeing these items again is quite slim.

Now I have to troll backward through YEARS of online receipts and paper receipts and pictures to find enough evidence to PROVE to the insurance company that we actually owned all of this. So my entire week may be getting eaten up with this ridiculous nonsense. It’s hard to feel happy about returning to Australia when we have to go through things like this and it came out of both of our mouths yesterday. We forgot to lock our car doors in Moyon or St. Martin de Brehal or St. Girons quite a few times when we were living in France for several years. Nothing ever got touched. But we return to Australia and within weeks back here we are burgled???

More soon-ish…

©Deborah Harmes and ©A Wanderful Life
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London Police Come Out Again

An English summer brings to mind sandwiches and cold drinks, barbeques in the back garden, leisurely days by the seaside or amidst the green and rolling countryside. And we mustn’t forget the bright pink skin from too much sun on too pale skin. Instead, the summer of 2011 is going to be remembered, particularly in London, for being the year of the riots and for being cold and wet and distinctly un-summer-like.

Emerging from our semi-housebound state (work commitments have kept us tucked up inside), we relished the opportunity to get out into the sunshine with cotton clothing on instead of the cashmere cardigans that have been our friends for months. So on this bright and sunny Saturday, we ventured a few train stops away to go to the markets at Spitalfields and Brick Lane.


Liverpool Street Station exterior on a bright and sunny day.


The sight of London’s police force out in great numbers was a bit jarring as we emerged from the Liverpool Street Station and heard the shouting crowds in the distance. Whole streets were closed off to pedestrians and vehicles alike and we could see — no exaggeration — hundreds of uniformed officers in every direction. According to the late coverage in The Guardian, “EDL London march halted by police”, approximately 3,000 members of the police were in attendance at several key locations in the East End.


Barricaded streets in London during EDL march on Saturday, 3 September 2011.


And the reason for all of this police presence? The EDL — English Defence League, a white supremacy group, was marching in force in the East End and we could certainly hear the roaring and chanting both for and against these people. I lingered long enough to take a few pictures, but we thought it best to keep moving in case the situation degenerated into the kinds of violence that we all lived through in early August.


Strong police presence to deter violence at EDL march on Saturday, 3 September 2011.


Police in London waiting calmly as EDL white supremacy group marches through East London.


There was a calm sense of purpose on the faces of those uniformed men and women — orderly and matter of fact. It’s an odd thing to comment on, but London has been rather turbulent lately so it is comforting to think that there are enough law enforcement folks nearby to keep any potential violence in check.


London policeman quietly watching the streets and people.


Tomorrow will be a pleasant change of pace — a story about the colourful areas of Spitalfields and Brick Lane and I’ll have photos galore to show you that vibrant and fun part of London.

Come back soon!

©Deborah Harmes and ©A Wanderful Life
Please respect the words and images on this page.
All rights reserved.

Betwixt and Between

Have been away from the computer for most of the last three weeks as we departed France, sailed from Normandy to Portsmouth, journeyed up to Norfolk, spent 10 days there, and then came down to London last week.

We’ll be in London for the entire month of August and perhaps part of September. We’re living in the home of an actor-writer that I shall not name for security reasons. He and his family are away for the month while we do renovation and construction for them. I’m doing the decorating/design work and Mark is doing the building.

We had some edgy moments last night when the air was filled with the sounds of helicopters and the wailing of sirens from police cars, ambulances, and multiple fire trucks. The riots and fires that broke out in Tottenham are not far from the neighbourhood in North London where we are currently living. And yes, it was nerve-wracking to listen to that set of sounds and then see the destruction that had been wrought this morning when we we tuned in to the BBC news. It is after two o’clock in the afternoon and there are still helicopters flying over in waves.

Have altered our plans for the day, are staying in on this edgy Sunday and working on the house, and have decided that we’ll take a day off mid-week in the London museums.

There are still more stories and pictures from Germany and France that have not gone online! So watch for those in the days and weeks ahead and I’ll sprinkle the new items from London in between.

Bye for now!