I was born in a small town in Eastern Europe. I won’t tell you its name, or which country it’s in – I believe it is better if it remains free of tourists. Suffice it to say, it was no place special. It wasn’t small enough that everyone knew each other by name, but it was small enough that you’d know most people’s faces. It had a mall, a movie theater, nice schools, interesting architecture, more churches than we ever needed and the biggest point of pride for the locals was our almost zero crime rate. At worst, some teens would vandalize an old building, but other than that, it was the safest town in the country.
If you ever went there, you might attribute that to the extreme measures people took to ensure their house could not be broken into. Although, you’d only see that if you happened to visit on the last day of the month.
I remember the routine very well; we repeated it every month of my life, always on the last day. My mother would kiss my father as he left for work, and sternly warn him to come back before sunset. My father always promised that he would. He never broke that promise.
We never had school that day, and most parents, including my mother, didn’t allow their children to play outside. Kids and rebellious teenagers were kept indoors all day, along with pets. I later discovered it wasn’t always this way, but you know how children are. They start playing with their friends, lose track of time and when sunset comes around, they still haven’t made it home. It was safer to keep them from leaving home at all.