So, I had a small misadventure yesterday waiting for M's parcels. I got a buzz from the flatblock intercom; the parcelman was waiting downstairs.Now, the intercom and the button for letting people in are unreliable, so I told him I'd physically let him in. Took me half a minute to find keys and trot downstairs; no sign of the guy. At all. There were two people waiting outside the block, as if they were waiting to get into a particlular flat. One told me the delivery guy had left the parcel with someone in the block. But not who or where. I went back up a minute, annoyed; then I thought why didn't she tell me which number? That's fishy. Went back out. This time she'd been joined by a few guys I half-recognised hanging around the block, scraggy-looking guys. This stocky little dog bounded over me. It didn't want to take a chunk out of my leg, at least. I called over So what flat did you say the package was in? She mumbled a name and number. I think I knew then I was being had, that they had the parcel. But it was one versus several. I made to go back in when one of the men said Here y'are mate, I opened it up. I didn't know it was yours. He hands back two boxes of mobile recharger cables (one of them open) and a book on airships. I doubt very much he would have got anything for them. I couldn't say anything. I just went back in. But I heard the guy say something about I want my twenty quid back. I needed to leave the flat a couple of hours later to go to writers' group, but I felt rattled at the point. Had to keep looking over the balcony to make sure they'd gone. On the way out I asked in at the local cornershop if this sort of thing had happened before. Turns out these people are chancers who live on the estate; petty crooks. They wouldn't be violent - I wasn't threatened in any way, but I found the situation intimidating - but they'd nick a charity collection box or a shopping bag if you turned your back. As the cornershop guy said, opportunists. I did laugh it off a bit later, but it unsettled me some. If the delivery man could have been arsed to wait thirty seconds, this wouldn't have happened. I don't know if he got one of that lot to sign for it, or simply handed it over. There's no place in the block to leave packages. Some days I find it difficult to leave the estate, even when I know a walk would do me good - times like that I make myself go out to get tobacco or teabags. The cornershop's the edge of the world. Incidents like this don't help much. I don't even feel like leaving the flat now, never mind the estate. Blegh.