Is Dainfern Safe?

As I mentioned earlier, our neighborhood was broken into the other day. According to the bulletin that was immediately posted by our security office, this was one in a string of similar break-ins throughout the Dainfern area (which makes you feel slightly better, somehow). Apparently the thieves knew where exactly the perimeter camera was knocked out due to a storm (corruption IS indeed a problem here), pried off the wall brackets holding the high-voltage wires and squeezed through underneath. Then, so the story goes, they succeeded in getting into a house, tying up the owner, and making off with a few items like cellphones. Incredibly, they got away. The tied-up homeowner was able to call for help and a neighbor untied him and called security, but by that time the attackers had left.

I was somewhat mollified by the swift response of the police and the fact that our security people are now putting renewed vigor into repairing fences and cameras and driving patrols at night, so that the same attack is now more unlikely to happen again. I am even more comforted by the fact that we don’t live anywhere near a fence and rather close to the main guard house, but of course it still sounds a bit scary. On the other hand, these stories always sound slightly fantastic as well and you wonder what is really behind them. I mean, why would somebody go through all this effort to break in when anything that was stolen had to be carried over a wall and squeezed through a rather small gap? Or then you hear of the guy who gets kidnapped out of his neighborhood in his own car to be forced to withdraw money from an ATM, and later it turns out that he set up the whole thing, for what reason is beyond me.

So we still feel  pretty safe here, but I did want to share the incident. Like I’ve said before, in another country you would brush this off as “something that happens to other people” and rarely at that, but here in South Africa you are immediately alarmed, because you hear so many similar stories.

By the way, as I’m sitting here writing this, a security patrol has twice passed by my house.

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