7. MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT BREAK-IN ATTEMPT
“I worked for a taxi company doing quiet night shifts, one time a customer phoned in to say her hire was late and I had to tell her that I didn’t have any bookings at her address for then. She swore me out and cut off the call. 10 minutes later she phoned back to say she found out where my office was and was coming down with her boyfriend and her brother, this was about 0230. At 0310 a car pulled up in front of the office and two men got out and tried to force their way into the office building, I phoned the police but the people left before the police got there. That was pretty scary.”
8. PROTESTERS WITH BOMBS
“I work in a sleep lab, and I smoke. Before participants come into the lab I have to set up things, as the labs are used for other activities during the day (it’s at a university). So I’m there, making beds, setting up the polysomnograph and whatnot alone. I take a break for a cigarette. It’s about 10pm, normally fully dark. But it isn’t.
There’s a bit of a weird orange glow in the sky. Strange smell on the air. No idea what it is, but work is work, I shrug and go inside.
While I’m inside, I hear some weird noise from the outside world. Now…these are sleep labs. they are meant to be soundproofed. But some doors are open, and soundproofing isn’t perfect. So I send some messages to my friends who know university vibes a bit better than I do (I’m not the 18-22 of that sorta scene). Don’t hear anything for a while. Then get a message. There have been protests, they are letting off explosives at the University, the police are there but can’t engage.
I call participants, tell them not to come in. I find out apparently roads are blocked to and from the university. So, being a reasonable person…I turn off the lights and close all the doors, get in one of the beds and go to sleep. Roads out of the university were still lined with protesters when I left in the morning, but after about half an hour of convincing them that I was nice and they should let me leave, out all in one piece. Found out some of the explosives were about 200 meters from my lab.