no, that's not going to cut it. Any true story that includes Henrico's finest, "Are you F*#king kidding me!", and concludes with whether or not charges were brought should probably have a different beginning. Let me try again...
A few years ago it was my job to host
THE BIG FAMILY CHRISTMAS DINNER.
I had my family, H's family and any extended family type persons residing on the Eastern Seaboard arriving midday on Christmas. My siblings. and parents. and grandparents. and H's parents. and H's siblings....
So, like, 25+ people, true?
We celebrated the night before with our usual Christmas Eve type stuff... wholesome activities like church and Baileys and cookie decorating and Baileys and Twas the Night Before Christmas and Amaretto and Baileys.
While I was finishing the "prep work" on the Kincaid Print ~slash~ Martha Stewart-esque meal event that would begin at 8am with an Emerill Lagasse breakfast bake and conclude at 4pm with an exquisite leg of Lamb roasted with all the fixings, H picked up his parents at RIC. It was the first time they had ever visited us in Richmond for a major holiday. All that reunion jazz took us well into the wee hours of the morning.
Ok, what I mean by that is "I slaved like a dog while the father & son bonding time went well into the wee hours".
I was still hauling food stuff to the garage fridge well after midnight, and on what would turn out to be my last trip into the house, my hands were too full to lock the garage door behind me.... I wasn't even worried about it at the time.
The garage is detached.
We have a fence.
Inside the fence there are frequently two fierce dogs.
They will bark at anything. Small children, Squirrels, Rabbits, Mailmen, Fed Ex men, you name it.
After all the Santa chores and cheers were finished (i.e. I ran out of Baileys) I passed out in my bed dreading the o'early hour wake up.
The next morning at about 6AM we heard a loud hollow "WHOMP" from our sunporch. It sounded like vibrating plastic. I turned to H and mumbled, "Honey, the kids have gone downstairs and are playing with the sled we gave them..."
"Oh yeah..." he grumbles. "Hey wait, did YOU get the sled out of the attic?"
Me, instantly awake, "No...."
We both laid in bed for about 1.2 seconds before he bolted down the stairs and I shot into the kids' rooms only to discover that they were sound asleep in their beds.
So, what was that noise?
H's parents & Sister's doors are closed, the kids are in bed, the dogs are with me... so...?
Then I heard a much more intriguing sound. My husband is now downstairs talking in a calm sounding voice, "3XX6 Ridge Drive, yes.... yes... A man is trying to break down our door.... no ma'am... no.... no.... yes.... ",
Hey, wait a minute... he's on with 911! I came running down the stairs just as H asks me... "loudly with emotion"... to "please" lock the kids in with his sister - I heard a shouted, "GOT IT!" from upstairs.
The kids are safe with an adult behind a locked door.
I am now downstairs with the dogs.
Well. Apparently not.
Those less than worthless mutts will not utter a sound at the sight of a 5'10'' 280+ lbs naked man trying to break into our house.
Admittedly, I was stunned into silence as well.
He was naked. And large. And pale, er, fair skinned.
And throwing himself against the sliding glass door.
Each pass at the door resulted in the door bowing under the strain.
Each pass at the door resulted in my eyes bowing under the strain.
H turns to me and asks, "do you know him? Is he a neighbor?"
I'm thinking, Are you F*#king kidding me?, but what I went with was, "No, but it's 17 degrees and he's naked, so... he might not look like himself".
H, myself and our two silent dogs were now standing in the livingroom looking out through the sun porch doors at a man who was slobbering and screaming at us. Its as though a mute button was hit on the sound in the living room and all you could hear was the muffled "too loud TV" from the other side of the glass.
Whomp! there it is...
The large pale dark haired man was throwing his body against the door, walking 3 steps away, before launching himself again.
(I mentioned, NAKED, right? Quite a site, I assure you).
Upstairs we suddenly heard H's mother talking to H's father, "Greg? Greg! Wake up! The police are here... and... AND they have their GUNS DRAWN! Greg, I'm SERIOUS. Get. Out. Of. Bed! Did you hear me? Guns!!!"
Five uniformed cops showed up, each in their own cruiser with lights flashing, and each with their guns drawn. Using the duck and cover method as seen on TV, they advanced across our yard. These boys were young cops. The kind who draw duty on Christmas day, and they were so obviously happy to be on a call.
I watched them stealth across the dry grass with hand motions and nods, silently hop our fence gate before the lead cop shouted "FREEZE!"
Did the Naked man freeze???
Remember I said it was just like TV? No one ever "FREEZE"s there either.
Instead he ran into our garage. The police had to kick in the garage door and drag him out into the front yard. They were kind enough to cover him with some kind of tarp from our garage on the way across the yard so my neighbors wouldn't be shocked.
~would that I'd been so lucky~
They popped him a cruiser, and Officer Hottie came in to take our statements.
Remember my silent dogs who have yet to speak a word?
As Officer Hottie crosses the threshold, the mute button was released and the dogs were lifted from their trance. Fangs snarled as they leapt to life in a deafening roar of unleashed rage. I'm grappling with the white one as my husband dragged the other from the room.
The cop grinned an ~awe shucks ma'am~ routine as he drawled beautifully, "they all act that way. It's the uniform that makes dogs afraid & therefore aggressive toward cops and postal workers."
"But", I protested feebly as the shock of the morning set in, "they didn't bark at the intruder..."
Still smiling, "well, he was naked... so they assumed he wasn't a threat."
It was about 9am when they finally left, and not one present had been opened. Breakfast was not in the oven, nothing had been done to prepare for my meal for 20+. My "Halmark Holiday" turned out the way I could have predicted... a disorganized jumble of lateness and crazy, but with a story worth telling.
It turned out the naked would be intruder lived about 5 streets away and was so drunk that the cops said he could have died. He was 19, and we didn't press charges. Around 8pm his father came by our house to apologize. There'd been some damage to our car & garage door, so he casually wrote out a check to cover it and thanked us for not pressing charges.
So, now each year on Christmas when the presents are opened and the wrapping is cleared, when the dishes are cleaned and H & I are sitting by the toasty fire watching the embers burn into ash, we have a standard "Was it a successful holiday?" Checklist that gets covered...
1) no illness?
2) no major cuts or injuries?
3) no cops...?
and if you've heard this one before, my apologies for the repeat. I first told this story on the blog several years ago, and at the time I believe I had about 20 readers. So I figured the odds were in my favor. Poor Mel has read it several times.