This happened one weekend last month. SIL's birthday falls on a working day, so dear brother decided to celebrate the wife's birthday on Saturday instead and surprised her with a small barbecue party on one fine Saturday night at my place we did. The bro was in charge of the guests and supplies while i was in charge with the rest of the prep and food. We started around after maghrib and everything was in order. We put up fairy lights (the one we bought for raya but never did use them), i prepared the chicken the night before (after googling for barbecue marinade from all over), made some Singapore fried beehoon and some potato salad. One cousin brought a scrumptious lasagna and we had cupcakes as the birthday cake. The only thing that was missing was that i forgot to serve the ice cream we bought after suddenly being stirred by a commotion outside the house. The guys were already at the neighbour's house opposite (of my home) when i rushed out to the gate to see what it was all about.
It turns out that my neighbour's house were broken into (while they were out having dinner & we were having the party outside!). My kid brother was the head chef in charge of grilling the chicken in the lawn outside but did not see anything amiss nor did he hear anything that of suspicion. My elder brother was also outside taking a puff. Hubby was playing with Aslan (the cat) when 2 of my cousins arrived and said they saw a car parked in front of the house which was about 2 hours ago but thought it was just one of the neighbour's friends or relatives. His next door neighbour also saw and thought the same. They only saw a man waiting in the car outside the gate. The thief apparently took their time to ransack each room and manage to get away with their jewelleries, a lap top, a camera and some cash. They pry open and broke the strong door and it could not serve its purpose (the door would not close at all). Since it was then past 10pm, my poor neighbour could not get the door man to fix it and had to sleep over at his brother's house that night. The neighbours and i could not believe they would dare break into the house while there are many people going in and out right in front of that house. (And we were later informed that the police were late to the scene due to another case of theft in our housing area that same night!)
Then a few days back, my cousin's car got hi jacked when my aunt was driving to get newspaper one early morning. Some indian guys came to the car with parangs and ordered her to get out of the car. They came in 2 cars but luckily my aunt was not harmed. The guys got away with the car, her wallet, house keys and my cousin's stuff (biz cards, cd collection - his canto exercise book too). My aunt later got back her IC and driving license as the bad guys tossed them out somewhere in Sunway and was discovered by a Sabahan guy. The crime happened in Kelana Jaya.
Yesterday, I read a newspaper article about a robbery in Muar where the robbers, after taking the victim's jewelleries and cash, also took their food supplies - rice, noodles and even instant noodles!
What a world we are all living in nowadays. I don't feel safe even in my own home. And when i am away, i can't help the fear of anyone breaking into our house. I guess time is really bad with everything is so expensive, we are all desperate. And you know what they say, desperate times call for desperate measures. Now the question is, who do you think we are to blame???
Anyway, Happy Birthday, SIL. And guys, please be careful. Wherever you are, whatever you do. Just be careful.