Our little market town is very small. Everybody knows everybody and the difficulty of shopping there is that every other footstep you take you meet someone you know and stop for a chat. We have always said how lucky we are to live in such a crime-free area. Admittedly there are burglaries and farm thefts galore but still we have always felt safe in the town. In fact, my son roars with laughter when I say that I am 'going into town' as it is such a tiny place it is little more than a village. It is often like stepping back in time and everything is peaceful. Until yesterday, that is.
Yesterday in broad daylight, at around ten oclock in the morning, an elderly lady of 84 was attacked in the town's toilets and she was hit over the head with a hammer four times and her handbag and stick were stolen. Later the handbag and stick were recovered, minus the money of course. What somehow makes the mugging much worse is that the perpetrator was a middle aged woman.
I'm sure that anyone who lives in a large town and is reading this will be thinking 'welcome to the real world' - but I think most of us up here did think that maybe we had escaped it. It is obviously not so, and I for one am greatly saddened.
I am still waiting to hear which elderly lady it was who was attacked. For many years I was President of the local Womens' Institute and although I came out of it when I married the farmer eighteen years ago, I am familiar with most elderly local ladies and I really do not wish it to be any of them - or anyone else for that matter.
Sad day indeed.