This is Really Rather Odd…

Yes, my dear, this is a cryptic title, I really understand that, but things are a little strange at the moment.  I know things are often a little weird here, but this has really surprised me…

I had been planning on having a quiet day.  One or two things have caught up with me and I felt that I needed a short period to myself.  That didn’t happen quite as I hoped!  Mind you, my dear, things often go pear-shaped, so I should have been expecting it.

As you are aware there are some empty flats in this building and in some of the other buildings in the complex.  I expected there would be some difficulty in renting them out owing to three folk being murdered in Gordon’s apartment a couple of weeks ago.

I’m sure you know how I enjoy looking out of my window.  Yes, I do have my binoculars at the ready – you would be surprised how often I use them.  I can see my friends go in and out of the coffee shop and sometimes they give me a little wave as they hurry on their way.  Why are people in such a rush nowadays?  Folk don’t seem to have the time to stop and chat when they’re out and about in the village.  It’s quite sad, as a few words here and there can make someone’s day.  It may be the only conversation they have that day.  I know they may speak to a shop-keeper in passing, but that doesn’t often count as being a conversation.  

I’m really sorry my dear, I’ve done it again.  I’ve wandered away from what I was thinking.  It’s so easy to lose my train of thought and find I’m thinking about something completely different.  No, I’m not thinking about Christmas, it’s far too early for that!  Some shops have got decorations on sale already.  Isn’t that ridiculous?  It’s much too soon to have Christmas music piped out at us from shops, but gradually more and more of them are joining in – and it’s always so loud.

Right my dear, you really must drag me back to the point of this story.  I was saying that there are quite a number of empty flats in the building.  Yesterday I heard a bit of a kerfuffle in the corridor so of course, I popped my head out to see what was going on.  Sadly I couldn’t see anything at all, which was a bit of a blow.  The noises also stopped, almost as quickly as they began.

As the day went on I forgot all about it – you know what it’s like.  You hear a strange noise and then you listen out for it again.  Eventually when nothing happens, it gradually moves to the back of your mind and then disappears completely.

This morning, I had a phone call from Mrs. M who started the conversation by saying “you’re not going to believe what’s happened” – which was really irritating because it didn’t tell me anything at all.  I asked her to explain, but she replied by saying “please put the kettle on in about fifteen minutes and  I’ll be round to tell you”.

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Don’t you think that was unhelpful?  Fancy leaving me not knowing anything more than before she rang!  However, I made a pot of tea and put the shortbread biscuits on a plate ready for an unexpected, but welcome visit from Mrs. M.  A few minutes later my doorbell rang and Mrs. M stood there, looking very smart as she was wearing a new dress.  She rushed in and sat down on the sofa while I passed her a cup of tea and waved the biscuits in her direction.  I put the plate down where we could both reach it, and waited for Mrs. M to tell me what was on her mind. 

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When she told me I really couldn’t believe it.  Apparently we have squatters in the building!  I laughed at first as I thought she was joking.  She looked at me again and repeated that there are squatters in the two apartments close to where she lives.  I asked how on earth they managed to get in and apparently a couple of them followed the milkman in through the security door.  From there it was easy for them to climb the stairs to Gordon’s flat and pull the police tape away from the door.  I had expected it to be removed a few days ago, but it was still there.

Mrs. M thinks there are four people squatting in each of the two apartments close to her.  From what she has overheard there are several other groups of squatters barricaded into flats on the first floor.  This was really surprising.  I wouldn’t have expected squatters to come into a retirement complex.  It doesn’t really make sense to me.  However, something will have to be done and very quickly.  These flats are small and there certainly isn’t room for four people to live in them.  I’m really not sure why they would choose to come here.  I appreciate that if they are unable to find a home to rent they need to do something, but retirement flats?  No, it doesn’t make sense at all.  If they were just looking to find a property there are plenty of empty houses around the village with considerably more appropriate accommodation.

There is something very strange about it.  I don’t like the idea of people being homeless.  I don’t think anyone does, but to move into sheltered accommodation full of elderly residents – no, something else is going on.  I really need to find out a little more before commenting further.

Mrs. M was quite upset about it.  I can understand why as her apartment is very close to one of those which is currently inhabited by the squatters.  I think I will ring our friendly police inspector and ask for his advice.   I assume that someone has told Head Office, although why I would expect that I don’t know!  They probably aren’t aware yet!  This something of a problem and we really don’t need it.  There have been enough things going on recently without anything else to add to the mix.

Well my dear, this isn’t what I had planned to tell you, but that will have to wait for a little while until I find out whether anything can be done about this situation.   I fear it may take some time until it is resolved.  On that unhappy note I better make some phone calls.  As Always –

With Love – Jan  xx  

Published by Jan

I'm retired, disabled and after sudden death of wonderful husband, have moved closer to my son, daughter-in-law and baby, Charlie. I live in sheltered housing at the bottom end of the scale called Independent Living. I had been in an online Knit and Natter group for a couple of years before Ian died and the members of the group were and still are a wonderful support to me. Since moving here I have now got my own little Facebook group where the members are now my friends and extended family. It was suggested that I write a blog - so here we are!!

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12 Comments

  1. Oh dear, that really does seem to be a strange thing to happen. Is Mrs M absolutely sure it’s squatters? I would have thought a sheltered housing complex and unlikely place for squatters, more likely illegal immigrants I would think. Anyway, I hope you get some answers very soon. I’m dying to know!!!

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    1. Frances – you may well be right! Whichever group claims responsibility we aren’t happy. We pay a high rental for these flats and feel we are entitled to peace and quiet – and preferably for it to be a murder free zone!! xx

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  2. Has Mrs M actually seen these ‘squatters’? How does she know there are four in each apartment?
    And how did the occupants know which flats were empty – I suppose the police tape gave that away. I don’t think squatters would care where they are as long as they have a roof over their heads, but if your apartment Jan is as small as the one I am hoping to go to then they must be ‘very’ friendly for four of them to be in there. I wouldn’t rule out illegal immigrants, but they would probably have forty-four in one apartment. Whoever it is how did they know the flats were empty. What about the milkman???? Just thinking aloud…..xx

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    1. Maggie – “there are more questions than answers” but I’ve been trying to fathom this out too. Apparently, the milkman saw 1 guy who followed him in and then another three rushed in after the first one. I understand that there were more groups of four or five folk wandering around on the pavement. There was a news item in Another Place which could have been seen by anyone and of course, they may have heard people talking about the murders here. At this stage I don’t actually know anything and I’m not going to knock on the door and ask them. Mrs. M heard several different voices from her apartment. It is surprising what sounds do come from the flats – if folk are talking in the corridor I can usually hear what is being said. Similarly, if people are speaking loudly next door I can hear them. Not what they are saying but you can detect different voices. xx

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  3. Oooh, the plot thickens! I wonder if Teddy knows anything? By the way every time I read your blog I get a craving for shortbread biscuits!!

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  4. It really is unacceptable that a retirement complex has such bad security. I presume everyone pays a management fee. I do feel that you are all being let down badly and I hope it gets sorted very quickly. Take care.

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    1. Julia – it is poor. The management fees are quite hefty, and at the moment, we aren’t getting value for money. Of course, the fact that we don’t have a proper building manager at the moment doesn’t help matters. xx

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  5. Of all things to happen! I don’t know how the laws work in your country but here it can be very hard and long to get them out, I’ve seen shows and it can take months and big legal bills ! Hope they leave compliantly!

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