I sent this email to everyone at my job today. Many of them have passed it on, and I was so glad to hear it.

On Friday afternoon, around 5:00, I was on my way to meet my husband at a restaurant downtown. I got off on the North Avenue exit (GA Tech), and I witnessed a robbery, about four cars in front of me, in the next lane.

The first thing I noticed when I approached the light were two men approaching cars, asking for money. Right after I checked to make sure my doors were locked (yes, I’m pretty paranoid), I looked up and saw one of them repeatedly punching the driver in a car. I was in pure shock for a few seconds, because I was sure that wasn’t what I was seeing at a busy intersection in the afternoon! This man had PLENTY of witnesses, and showed not the slightest bit of fear. When the light turned green and we all started moving (I was on the phone with 911 by this point), he stood there on the corner and COUNTED THE MONEY!!!

This proves that you can’t be too careful. I really wanted to share this with everyone, especially during this season, when we tend to be a little more in the giving spirit. Clearly, that’s all this person was trying to do.

It really doesn’t matter where you are. Yes, I was downtown, but people are crazy!! Period. I’m quickly losing faith in humanity (that’s not where your faith should be anyway, but you get my drift). I’m not really sure all of this foolishness can be blamed on the economy, either. I truly think that a lot of it also has to do with the fact that Atlanta is a big city, in the real sense of the word, and it hasn’t always been that way, so all of this is so shocking. But this kind of stuff is routine in New York City. The last time Lee and I were there together (2005), we turned on the news in our hotel room, and I started thinking, “Why are we here again?”

Bottom line: You can’t be too careful. Lee teases me about constantly being “paranoid”, as he likes to call it, but I don’t like to put anything past anyone. Everyone’s suspicious.

Even if you don’t live in Atlanta, please don’t disregard this. Be careful. Know who’s around you, and trust “that little voice”. If it doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t. Like I said, it doesn’t matter where you are. This stuff is happening everywhere! People keep telling Lee and I that we need to move. Well, besides the fact that the value of our house has dropped tremendously, what are the chances of us actually selling a house right now? Plus, even though people don’t like to acknowledge it, it’s happening EVERYWHERE, and it’s actually happening more in the suburbs of Atlanta than ever! And that came from all the police officers we’ve spoken to in the last 3 weeks. They’re all telling us that our neighborhood is on the low end of the spectrum, in terms of burglaries, compared to surrounding areas like Sandy Springs, Dunwoody, Alpharetta, Cascade, East Point…the list goes on. Basically, they said that the further north you go, the worse it is. That’s not to say that those places aren’t safe, but it does show that crime truly is everywhere, so…

Lee and I are not planning to move anytime soon. And continuing to tell us that we need to is not helping anything.

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