Do you know, I was talking to a friend recently, and he asked me about the first time I had to fly solo on a major robbery. It made me think for a little while, and then I remembered the first time I did what our American friends call the Apartment Challenge.
The idea is simple enough – you pick a building which has a number of tenants or flats in it, and you get as much as you can out, while at the same time dealing with whoever or whatever you may find there. Now, this would have been about 1978, and the house I was set the challenge for was a student house near Tottenham. It was a large detached house, and there were five students inside, but after that, I was on my own – and flying solo for the first time, as I said.
The challenge started for me at about eight on an autumn evening, and I had packed carefully, as well as taking care with my choice of clothing – a brown roll neck sweater under a cord jacket, jeans and soft shoes. I looked at