Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mothers Day In "South Central" North End

It's 3am and the helicopter has its search light in my back yard. The K9 unit is at the end of the street, and police are panning the back lane with search lights. Happy Mothers Day.
The helicopter has been by several times already, hovering low, with flickers of light coming from outside. I slowly came into consciousness with the realization that this was going on literally in my back yard. The helicopter was searching my yard, and the neighbouring yards, making a slow sweep of the area. The police were just a few doors down in the lane, checking each house, moving the flashlight beam up and down the walls of the houses and between. Youths on bicycles were seen moving about the neighbourhood. The odd person was seen on foot. Sirens were heard for a solid half hour as units congregated from every direction. And the helicopter is seen repeatedly coming back, flying low, with search light on, doing pass after pass, slowly scanning each yard. I can see my property lit up as it hovers over me each time it passes.
I am up now. Each pass of the helicopter intruding into my life has woken me that much further from a sound sleep. And I am awake now. I may as well write the blog. That way I can focus myself on a task and not be so upset with the intrusion into my life that this event has been.
Sleep was not easy to come by this evening. Not with the party / bonfire behind us, and the loud explosive bangs of fire crackers going off a few houses away. Those sounds caused me to physically jump in the air each time I heard them, as I was trying to fall asleep. They were close, and they were loud. But their exact location was unknown to me. Along with the sounds of the neighbourhood, the sirens seemed to be neverending. It was well past midnight, or even 1am by the time I got to sleep. My husband has not managed to get any sleep at all yet through the sounds of sirens, the helicopter, and noises of the neighbourhood. But now, we are wide awake; wide awake in South Central.
So, here we are watching the SPEED channel at 3:45am. It's the Monster Energy Supercross arena-cross in Las Vegas. They are racing 450 dirtbikes for the championship. And these guys are jumping triples now. Stewart cased it and went down, then Windom ran right over the bike that was down and hit Stewart. At least it's an exciting race.
Now, back to this event that has woken me up and kept my husband from sleep. It better make the news, or at least the Police Releases, for all the trouble it has caused us this morning. We experienced a major invasion of police resources for over an hour. And now that the forces have dissipated, we are left to try and salvage what we can of the night, because tomorrow will be here far sooner than we like. My Mothers Day will no longer go as planned, as we attempt to catch enough sleep to allow us to function through the day. Unfortunately these disruptions to our lives happen more often than I care to count. And now that we have the new helicopter, they are far more invasive to the innocents of the neighbourhood. I normally would not have woken up from the sirens and police walking through the lanes and the yards. I woke to the sound of the helicopter hovering over my house, and I woke to the flash of light coming in my window from its search light. And I woke from the helicopter coming over my house not once, or twice, but several times, until I was finally wide awake from the intrusion into my life.
Our new helicopter has changed the constant criminal activities of the summer from an annoyance in the North End to a war zone not unlike South Central LA. I only hope the invasion into my life in the wee hours of Mothers Day was worth it. Because it sure doesn't sit well with me right now.


  1. Good post. Before coming to Winnipeg, I lived in Edmonton. I always felt it odd that Winnipeg's chopper supporters always sited Edmonton as a model because Edmonton was just as divided on needing a helicopter as Winnipeg.

    Edmontonians had the same complaints as you site, people in certain areas feeling violated and disrupted by spotlights and fly-bys close to their houses and apartments.

    The problem is the police feel a need to show how valueble the helicopter so they use it all the time. What they need is a policy on when it is needed- car chases, possible physical harm, search and rescue etc. On Saturday, They were probably chasing kids breaking into garages. Given the kids know the neighbourhood better than the police, the chances of catchnig them is minute.

  2. As some one who is a cop told me once do you want to climb into a yard thats dark , to find out whos waiting for you with whatever in their hands. Maybe put as much energy into stoping the cause that the police have to be there. And to the previous comment love to watch you out run it .