Thursday Thoughts # 75

from Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard:
" In the fairy tales, the poor girl smiles when she becomes a princess. Right now I don't know if I'll ever smile again.
My heart plummets in my chest until it bounces around my toes."

Today's Thoughts:

this post is inspired by the words I read at Lee's Kitchen Connection yesterday.
She wrote a little about the violence rampant in the world today and how we should grab life by the throat and be happy. 
Eat the chocolate cake, she says, dance in the rain.
Life is short.

My post is from a little closer to home. This whole past week has made me quite sad and there isn't anything I can do about it.

You may have read here occasionally, my reference to 'the zombie' who lives in the flat upstairs from me.
I call him that because he is very quiet, rarely seen in the daytime, (or any other time for that matter) and he is grey. Grey hair, grey skin, grey clothes. Unwashed.
(Possibly too much information), he is one of the mental health tenants living here, there are quite a few scattered throughout these flats. All quiet, all harmless.

Back to C, upstairs. A few times when he has been out, people have "latched on to him" (is there a better phrase?). They come home with him and don't leave for several days. 
Until he is distressed enough to begin swearing and begging them to leave him alone. He doesn't know how to cope with people. He never knows who these people are, they say they are his friends, but he doesn't know them. I've heard them talking.

The latest group, I think there were three of them, stayed in his flat,  and harassed him in ways that are just so cruel. I think they stole money from him too. I heard one of them saying something about "it's only $15".
I heard him shouting for days for them to please leave me alone. Eventually it got to the swearing, he'd be shouting for them to f*** off. 
By Saturday he was so distressed, he came down to my flat, visibly shaking, apologised for the noise and asked would I please call the police. I said I would and he went back upstairs. Before the police arrived, he was back at my door, asking could he please come in. 

Believe me here when I say he isn't a violent man. 
He was close to breaking point so I let him in and he crawled along the floor refusing to get up where his head might be visible through the window.

Want to know why?
Of course you do.

Those viciously cruel people, had one of those laser pointer things that teachers use and they'd been pointing it at his head telling him they were going to blow up his brain. 
For a week, they'd been there tormenting him.
He doesn't know that isn't possible and I couldn't convince him. He was completely terrified. 

I was very glad when the police arrived, they spoke to him, asked how many people were upstairs (none now, they'd left when he told them I'd called the police, but he couldn't stay up there because they were watching and would blow up his brain through the walls or window).
Eventually, the two policemen took him back upstairs and I turned on all my fans to get the smell of long unwashed body and clothes out of my living room and kitchen. I don't know what happened upstairs, but they left after a while and C was there alone. 
But still very distressed. 

About an hour later, he came down and knocked on my door again. He had a full backpack and gave me his keys, telling me to give them back to housing as he was running away where "they" couldn't find him.
And he left. To live on the streets I suppose. 

I held the keys a couple of days in case he came home and wanted to get in, but eventually took them to the housing office and told them the story. Mr....said he would contact the mental health people and they would look out for him. I gave a description, grey, thin and smelly. 
He is on their rental records, so they know who he is.
Yesterday (Wednesday) , a lady from the mental health  people came to thank me for what I had done and to let me know that C had been found, had suffered a major breakdown and was now in hospital. I wasn't home when she came, so she spoke with neighbour P (the nosy one) and asked her to pass on the message. P did.
I hope very much that C will be alright, I don't know that he will be coming back here to live.

Here's what I would like these cruel young people to think about, (although they're the sort who never will). 
Imagine he's your father, your brother. Perhaps your son. 
Would you like people such as yourself, doing to your son (father, brother) what you have done to this poor man?

How can they do such things? In the name of fun? 
They weren't teenagers, they were older, I saw them outside a time or two, one, the girl, sat on the lawn and did things on her ipad and phone for a while. I kept my doors locked of course.

So it isn't just wars and terrorists "out there". The violence is right here at home too. 
And I am very sad about the whole thing. Because they probably won't get caught and will have gotten away with it.


  1. Oh River, 'sad' is an understatement isn't it dear girl - 'opportunists', 'bullies' - just a couple of titles that come to mind. Far too many people like your neighbour 'C' are living like this - most people don't get to see it or hear or be involved and I so feel for your compassion and distress and sadness. x

  2. Thank you for your help. Perhaps these people were the product of abuse themselves. No excuse, but a reason. Perhaps too much time with violent games. I'm glad the old fellow was extricated. My personal method for coping is such behavior begets behavior; they attract people who will abuse them in turn. I hope that will bring understanding. Who knows. But, the old man is safe.

  3. Oh River.
    Thank you so much for you help. I am so glad that your neighbour has been found and is safe, but so very sad that it came to that. And my heart aches for him, and the too many other people who are forced to live in fear. I will keep C and you in my mind as I go to LL today. C, as a reminder of the sad, the hurting the lonely and you as a reminder that there is light.

  4. There are far too many grubs around these days who prey on others; who do harm to others, physically and mentally; far too many who gain pleasure from doing so. Soulless, indecent cowards each of whom live without a conscience. They are wastes of space - thieves of oxygen.

    I'm sorry for your poor neighbour, River...he's a sick man and to be taken advantage like that by packs of heartless vultures, time and time again; to have been tormented over and over again; to be hurt and to be wounded, physically and mentally, being toyed with...because he is a helpless, wretched creature is so very sad; so disturbing; very distressing. And what has happened to the poor man angers me intensely. The low-life thugs who do such despicable acts are scum.

    Thankfully you were there to help him; able to reach out to give him solace. Thankfully, he knew he could count on you to help him. Thank you on his behalf. Let's hope he gets the professional help he needs. Let's hope he never has to go through such horrors ever again. May the poor soul find some peace.

    I know I probably don't have to say this, River...but make sure you keep yourself safe...lock your doors etc., at all times. Be aware of what is going on around you and who is hanging around. I know carrying a can of mace around is illegal...but a can of hairspray or insect spray isn't...any sprays similar to them when sprayed in someone's eyes can cause discomfort and put them off guard for a few moments. Take no one for granted. Take care of yourself and your own safety.

    I'm not a nervous person...I've lived alone and travelled alone for many, many years, but I keep a small can of hair spray on my bedside table. When I was working in the hospitality industry, working late into the nights, I always carried a can of hair spray in my car, within easy reach. And I always had my tools of trade...on the passenger seat beside me. The knives weren't illegal...being a chef/cook...I needed them for my job; I never left them at work. My knives were very important to me, for my use they travelled back and forth with me. One had (I still have it) a 14-inch blade. Even a whole piece of rump flinched when it saw that knife resting on the kitchen work bench!!

    In my post I wasn't referring only to violence "out there", River. My words, thoughts, particularly in my second and third paragraph covered all forms of violent acts being perpetrated on the innocent; on the vulnerable. Every hour of the day we’re hearing of another criminal act. Human beings are out of control.

    People have lost respect for others...they've lost self-respect. Dignity and pride of being are becoming extinct.

    Thankfully, there still are people like you in this world, River. :)

  5. Straight away my mind went to the Snowtown murders. While hardly the same, it too was a case of people taking advantage of vulnerable people with mental health issues. You did a good job, that is helping but keeping a sensible distance. You gave refuge and notified professionals whose job it is to deal with such matters. Hopefully he will recover. Sometimes people with mental health issues just lack someone to talk to them with some common sense and odd thoughts and ideas get right out of control. The scum involved are no doubt on the police radar and sad to say, no doubt will continue to lead such lives.

  6. Rose~from OZ; the saddest part is I don't know if he will recover. He isn't "normal" to begin with, this may have tipped him too far. It's possible he may be moved to an assisted living facility.

    Joanne; he is safe in hospital, but what about when he gets out? I hope he is taken to an assisted living facility where tenants are watched more closely and those "visitors" who don't belong are not allowed in. C isn't an old man, I think he is a bit younger than me, in his 50s.

    Elephant's Child; I'm glad I was here and able to call the police. Many here would just shut their doors, in fear of retribution from the provokers of the trouble. me? I have the police on speed dial. I don't know what will happen to C, his mind is so damaged and these idiots have made it worse :(

    Lee; an excellent description, being toyed with for their pleasure. I wish I'd thought of that.
    I'm always careful, keeping an eye out for people who don't belong, you get used to seeing the same faces and anyone new is easy enough to spot. My security doors are always locked and I don't let people in unless I know them well.
    I have a couple of pretty big cleavers too, nice and sharp, and I have the police on speed dial.

    Andrew; people who take advantage of vulnerable people should experience the same themselves one day, so they can see what that feels like. As I said, perhaps one of them will have children one day and one of those children might be a special needs child who gets mercilessly picked on. Not something I would ever wish for , but then they would know and possibly remember the awful things they did.
    I'll probably never find out what happens to C now, I hope he goes to an assisted living facility where he is better cared for and people who don't belong are not allowed.

    1. Yes, I think it does sound like he needs closer monitoring.

  7. This had me crying after I read it, as it was too close to home for me.
    Not now, thankfully, but in my young days, I often crossed paths with vagrants and the mentally ill. And, I lived in a home where parents see-sawed violently between sane and not so.
    Visiting my mother in institutions was a regular event, and I got to know many of the patients.

    I've always had a soft spot in my heart for those like your poor neighbour C, for I very nearly trod the same perilous path after running away from home.
    I always felt, and still do, how close one can get to living in similar situations, and often think, "there but for the grace of god go I".

    The frightening part is that there are many, like those aggressors, who prey on the homeless. To them, it is sport, and consequences are rarely, if ever, considered.
    And, I can tell you, their disconnect results in the worse kind of cruelty.

    Your consideration shown to C was incredibly kind, and I thank you for that.
    I too will keep him in my thoughts - he is one of far too many.

  8. Oh dear me. A very sad tale which is true. I'm pleased C was found but in not a good condition. However, in hospital at leased he will get a feed and wash. Poor man. Those that tormented him should be punished, but they won't be found.
    Must be heart breaking for you seeing a man in his condtion being 'used and tormented'.

  9. Vicki; as a child, I too, crossed paths with quite a few vagrants. They'd come wandering down from the stations where they'd had a few months work and we'd see them in summer enjoying the beach where we lived, my brother and I. I don't recall that we spoke to very many, but if they struck up a conversation, we'd reply, but always kept our distance.
    Then in later years, here in Adelaide, I often spoke to random people who didn't seem to have any home but the streets.Usually I'd be waiting for a bus and we'd just get to talking, until my bus arrived, then I'd be gone.

    Margaret-whiteangel; heartbreaking to see anyone at all being used and tormented. I could wish all sorts of bad things for the tormentors, but that wouldn't do any good and there's no place for hate in my life.

  10. I just don't understand people at all. That poor poor man. Thank goodness you were there for him.

  11. The saddest statement about humanity is its ability to be inhuman. To find and torture the very weakest and most helpless. Tragic. So glad you were there for C. You make me realize there is hope.


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