I was home alone when it happened.

I’d just snuggled up under a threadbare quilt on the couch, absorbed in Brené Brown’s Rising Strong. Like the poem touts, the children were nestled all snug in their beds, and my husband had just returned to the office to finish a big project. A cup of peppermint tea sat perched to my right, still too hot to drink, but just steamy enough to warm my hands by.

That’s when I heard the helicopters and the voice over the loudspeaker: “Residents, stay inside your houses. K9 Units are on the prowl. They will attack.”

The whirring of the blades intermixed with the 14-word proclamation, repeated at ten-second intervals. Spotlights circled overhead and dogs barked in the distance. Police officers yelled from down the block.

Criminals were on the loose.

I set the dead bolt. I checked the backdoor. I turned off all the lights in the house, because somehow, maybe, if I couldn’t see them, they couldn’t see me. They wouldn’t choose me.

I sat by the window, peering out closed blinds.

I prayed for peace, inside and outside and all around.

And just like that it was over: the whirring quieted and the dogs stopped barking and the lights stopped flashing. A text came in from my husband, and then from two of my neighbors, people I’ve known for less than a year.

Silence enveloped, just as soon as it had begun. And I found myself thinking, Still, I choose this place. I choose this city and these people and even the scary things, too, and I’ll continue to choose it over and over again.

For mine is a love story of place.

the story continues, for you KNOW the story always continues. Click here and head on over to She Loves Magazine for the rest of the piece. You’ll hear some thoughts about place, like how I don’t think, given the choice, that place is supposed to be like an arranged marriage. Otherwise, what’s YOUR love story? And is yours a love story of place?