I found this story of a woman found dead after five years incredibly sad and deeply disturbing. I was also intrigued.
In case you didn’t see the story, a woman in Michigan was found dead in her car, parked inside the garage of her home. Investigators believe her mummified remains had been there for at least five years. The woman traveled a lot, had her mail sent to the local post office, and had all her bills automatically paid electronically. It wasn’t until her bank account dried up and her house fell into foreclosure that someone paid attention and stumbled upon her remains.
It set me to thinking about the kind of world we live in, where a person can disappear for five years without anyone noticing. Her neighbors assumed she was traveling and one kind neighbor even mowed her lawn while she was “gone.” But no friends noticed the lack of phone calls? No family members missed her Christmas cards and wondered if she was okay? No one said, “Hey, haven’t seen what’s-her-name around here for a while. Wonder where she is.”
I’m trying not to let my imagination run wild with picturing an existence in which not one single person gives a flying fig whether you live or die. Not a soul gives you a second thought. I find it impossible to imagine what a sad and lonely life that must be.
But the story, along with the baffling Malaysian Airlines saga, has me intrigued about the idea of disappearing in our modern world. We’re all so plugged in and connected that it seems impossible to disappear, and yet this woman did just that.
So, I’m wondering (purely from a point of curiosity, you understand) is it impossible to be invisible in our modern world, or is it easier than ever to appear to disappear?