I am quite excited to talk about Philosophical Disquisitions: Another Journey. It became available on Amazon, last week, for $12.99. I am putting one chapter from my book that I hope you will enjoy, and it will inspire you to purchase my book to read the rest of the stories.
523 Beckman Drive
“There is a man in my house. I am 99 years old. My address is 523 Beckman Drive. Please send the police.”
Once again Edna left me speechless. She has done that many times through the years.
“What did you just say Edna?”
I had stopped in to visit her, and I had no idea of what she had gone through two days prior. In case you have never had the pleasure of sharing time in the shade of Edna’s spirit, know that this is an incredibly special place and a very special woman.
I interviewed her in December 2020 for last year’s book, Philosophical Disquisitions: Another Year. In that essay I posed this thought to her-
“Edna, tell me your life story and then tell me if you think what you have lived through is worse or easier
than living through this Covid-19 pandemic.”
With no hesitation she said, “I think definitely Covid is the worst. Those who have lost loved ones, how horrible that is. And there are those who can’t visit family and friends who need them. That is worse. My life has been fraught with challenges, but what are my choices? I try to accept everything that comes my way. I had a loving and caring family, wonderful parents, and by the grace of God I am still sitting up taking nourishment each day. My heart goes out to the people who are suffering”.
That’s my dear Edna.
“Oh my gosh Edna, what happened?”
“I had gone out to dinner with Doris, Barb and John. As I walked into the restaurant, I tripped and bumped my nose, and my ring scratched my hand. Don’t worry, I am fine.”
“Are you sure?”
“Yes, just a scratch and a small bruise. Once I got home I changed into my pajamas and robe and sat on the couch to watch some television. I dozed off and on as I watched the news.”
I smiled as I envisioned her diminutive five foot frame nestled on this big couch.
“A loud BANG woke me up.”
“I heard the bang and I looked at the clock. It was 9.39 PM. I got off the couch to check the back door and
when I walked into the kitchen there was this TALL man standing there. He was dressed all
in black and he had a lot of facial hair, and his eyes were wide, and they were looking right at me. I looked up at him and said, what are you doing in my house?”
“My gosh Edna, weren’t you afraid?”
“I couldn’t let him see that I was. He raised his hands up towards his face and shook his hands and mumbled something that I could not understand. I could see immediately when he raised his hands that he was not holding a weapon, so I said to him, you have to leave my house.”
“I would have wet my pants.” Edna only smiled at this comment as she went on with her story.
“At that point he reached out and took hold of my hand and wrist. I silently prayed; Lord help me through this. He had huge hands. He then started leading me through the utility room into a short hallway into the living room and back into the kitchen. I offered no resistance. I said again in a loud voice, you do not belong her, you need to leave my house. I was trying to stay calm. I was definitely aware of everything that was going on. He mumbled something again. The only word I understood was phone. I said no phone. He was still holding on to my hand and wrist. He started walking me again towards the utility room and into the short hallway. The bathroom door entered that hallway. He let go of my hand and he went into the bathroom. I think he was looking for a hiding place. He went in and shut the door. I could tell he didn’t turn the light or water on. When he closed the door I went into the living room and picked up my cell phone. I walked to the front door dialed 911. I left the front door open and turned on the front porch lights.”
“Why didn’t you leave? I would have been out of that door in a flash.”
“I couldn’t’ because there was a man in my house.”
“Why would that stop you from leaving?”
“There was a man in my house.”
Again I shook my head in disbelief. And I also could not hold back a laugh, a nervous anxious laugh. I was thinking in that brief moment that I could have so easily have lost her. Edna gave that all knowing smile and then she continued with her tale.
“I talked to the dispatcher and told her there was a break in at 523 Beckman Drive. She repeated the address, and I said yes. There is a man in my bathroom, and I am 99 years old, and I need help. Then I calmly hung up the phone.”
“Edna, how did you stay so calm?”
“I appeared to be calm on the outside, but I was afraid. I left all the lights on and the front door open and went back towards the bathroom. I said to him you have to come out of the bathroom and get out of my house. Within a few seconds he came out of the bathroom and stood in the doorway of the living room. He still had this glassy eyed look on his face. As I turned around two police officers came in the front door with weapons drawn. They told him to get on his knees and put his hands in the air.”
“Where were you then?”
“I definitely was in the middle of all of them. A short struggle ensued, and they soon had him down on the floor with his hands handcuffed behind his back. At that point two other police officers took hold of my arms.”
“You need to sit down.”
“We went into the kitchen, and I did sit down.”
“Now what were you thinking? You certainly must have been shaking, maybe crying by now?”
“No, none of the above, but I was relieved that the police were there. One officer asked me if I remembered my address and I said yes, 523 Beckman Drive. Then they asked my birthdate. I said July 2, 1922. The officer had a grin on his face as he said,
“You are 99 years old?”
He said, “You are awesome and a little bit tough.”
“I said well I am a little tough. I am German. I am a determined German. This brought on a chuckle from both of them. While they were talking to me in the kitchen the paramedics came and checked the intruder. And then he was taken out of the house. The officers that were in the kitchen with me asked me if I wanted to sign a complaint against the intruder. I said no. The one officer did say he did break the law and you have the right to sign a complaint No, I don’t want to. He needs help. Then another officer took me into
each room of the house and we checked windows to make sure they were locked. We checked the back door, and it was at that point that I knew how the intruder got in. That door was hard to close and
I had not closed it securely and locked it. Since then I have gotten a deadbolt. I now make sure I check the front and back door each night. While I was in the kitchen the officer did ask if I would like him to call someone to be with me, and I said no. He said are you sure you don’t need someone? No, I need to get through the rest of the night by myself. There is no need to wake up my family at this time of night. I told him I would just camp out on the couch.”
“Why would you want to do that?”
“I don’t know. Maybe I was just wide awake, and I would relax and watch TV for a while. The next day I did go to the police station to thank them personally for their rapid response.”
“Were they aware of your story?”
“Yes, at least part of it. The officer gave me a copy of the police report. He of course left out names pertinent to the case. I am not afraid to be alone. I am secure in my home.”
Again I could not hold back my nervous laugh. I leaned over and gave her a big hug of love and relief. Not too hard, but tight enough that there was no doubt I was glad she was sitting with me and sharing her story.
As I drove home I reflected back to our conversation, and Edna’s
calm. I shook my head and shuddered as I envisioned her diminutive frame next to that hulking deranged man. Her words, “Lord, help me through this” played over and over in my mind. I wondered yet again about the higher power that watches over my dear aunt.
Do I believe in Divine intervention? Yes, sometimes.
Does Edna believe? Of that I have no doubt!
Ah, Edna, you are indeed my treasure.