I was checking out of this hellhole.
Okay, itís not really a hellhole. Itís my life.
And itís not as bad as I make it out to be. But itís a life that has worn me thin.
A life which has seen too much bloodshed and gore and Iím sick of seeing the cruelty humankind can conflict on another.
I am a homicide investigator for the Rockford Police Department. Or was. I threw in the towel after an especially horrific sexual assault on a child. My heart just couldnít take anymore.
I was told by many that what I was doing was crazy, just short of lunacy. Isnít there a little crazy in all of us, though?
Friends and family werenít the only ones who thought I should rethink my decision. I sold my house, my Mercedes, all my personal belongings, except what clothing I thought I would need and a few items I couldnít part with. Like special gifts from those I love dearly. Parents. Siblings. Friends.
I chucked it all and bought an island. Yes, I said an island. Then I bought a houseboat, such as it was, to get me from here to there. And a motorcycle to get me from the waterís edge to wherever I was traveling on land. A Harley, of course. And the wave of objections rang loud and long over the land.
First, let me explain. I am a thirty-three year old woman. That was the main complaint. But youíre a woman, they said. You canít be living all alone on an island. You canít be sailing all over the place in a houseboat. Alone. Itís unheard of.
And, you certainly canít be riding a motorcycle. Donít you know how dangerous they are?
Why not? I asked. Besides, I am not alone.
I have a bull mastiff the size of a small horse who may look like a lazy mutt but given a command from me would and could rip your throat out. I call him Winston.
Then, thereís my weapon. A Glock. Itís perfection in itself. Fits my hand like a glove. Plus, Iím a crack shot. Missing a target is not an option. Living or no.
Then I have a Taser. And I donít hesitate to use if the situation warrants it.
So, what else would I need, I ask you?
If I was a man, would there be any objections at all?
That answer would be a definite no.
But I did exactly that.
I bought my island.
And my houseboat.
I gave her a name. Saving Grace. Just like my island and my motorcycle. And Winston. She was mine.