I live in the North End.
There, I said it. Now, you might think my hesitation is because I'm ashamed. Quite the opposite actually. I am like a fiercely proud mother and my neighbourhood is my special child and having to defend it on a regular basis gets a bit tiring.
I haven't always lived here, in fact I grew up in one of the more desirable post codes that the city has to offer. I found my house on a fluke and have often considered it to be the best thing that has happened to me.
Now, the 5 years that I have lived here have not gone by without incident - in fact that's what prompts this entry. I looked out my window to see the boys in blue (including SWAT counterparts) blocking off streets and surrounding one of the trouble houses on my street.
I was able to get the guys stationed in the car outside my house to tell me that there was weapons concern with the property in question. Amusingly, they suggested I go back in the house and turn the lights off; call me crazy, but I figure with the SWAT team dealing with the house in question and dozens of police around I didn't think I was in any danger. I appreciated the sentiment but obviously if there was any danger to the public then they would have been knocking on my door rather than sitting in the car eating a sandwich while the SWAT guys did their thing.
Part of me debated not to post this - after all, this event isn't going to make the news, heck, if I had been asleep I never would have known it happened either. I usually keep this sort of thing to myself, all of my friends and family already think I'm a bit nutty for living here.
So why do I mention it? So that I get my first of many chances to tell you how many AMAZING neighbours I have. All I ever read in the paper about my neighbourhood are the bad stories and after every shooting they seem to find the same person to interview who "always hears gunshots". For the record, I have heard fireworks, backfiring and any number of other popping and banging noises. I have heard at least one gunshot, it was different and everyone knew it was different - I know this because it brought all of us "good folk" out of our houses and we talked.
As far as I'm concerned the Winnipeg Police do a great job and I tell them that almost whenever I get the opportunity. Incidents like this get the bad people out so that there can be a higher ratio of good to bad and that's a-ok in my books.
Life is a lot of what you choose to make it, and if you want to see nothing but bad things then that's all you'll see. Now, I know sometimes I have a bit of a Pollyanna thing going on but someone has to bring a little hope and happiness to the party.