Re: I welcome this
As I say, at the time it just felt odd. Standing watching is a passive act. Taking photos of him is not, and although it was an unusual event. I didn't think to photo it. I rationalized it away at the time, assuming that someone doing something like this has some good reason to do it. I remember presuming it was an estate agent photographer.
The drone was very big, but "packing it away" was as simple as him putting it into the back of his hatchback and driving away. I wasn't near enough to talk to him, but I could see the camera and it appeared to be (at the distance) to be almost like a high quality camera (not the cheapo ones I assumed they had). This looked like a large drone you could stick a Canon EOS under.
The drone use has been reported to the police via the housing management committee who handled the break-ins (one of whose members was burgled) and it was through them I found that use of drones is a known modus operandi. Our borough has been on the receiving end of a house breaking gang which is apparently well known to the police. They are periodically jailed, but clearly not for long enough, but there are lulls in the breakins which have been running for years.
I reflected on how easy to find the time to do a breakin is. In a middle class suburban area like ours almost everyone works. From 9-5 the area is effectively empty with no crossing traffic. The shared close area in older flats is unlocked for the postman to access. You can be be almost certain of being undisturbed as you break in. Want more confidence? Leave an accomplice outside with you on quick dial. He has a practiced delaying tactic when homeowners return, while alerting you. Want to check if the flat is empty? Just ring the doorbell and shout into the letter box. And culturally Swedes are loath to interact with others. They just don't want to be involved. Most Swedes don't know their neighbours.
If you are visiting friends in Stockholm who live in flats, take a look at the door lock area - too often you will see evidence of crowbar usage. The burglaries near us were unusual in that the entire security door frame, a solid dead-bolted steel affair, built into the wall, was removed. No one is entirely sure how they did this. Our flats were built with 'soft concrete' (no longer used) which makes this possible I hear.
I am not sure how effective the Swedish police are. House breaking seems a high priority crime to me, and I wonder what will happen the day the flat is not empty. Despite living in a decent suburb, we have had a gangland shooting (one dead, multiple injured when one of those about to be executed escaped and ran into a local pizzeria - he was followed and the shooter fired randomly, hitting locals) and THREE arson attempts on residences (which I think should be treated as attempted murders). But I never get the impression anything is done about them. I know of the breakin gang, and even heard names. Ditto the arson - the community 'knows' who did them. Sweden is no longer the middle class socialist dreamscape its reputation was built on. Its becoming a country of haves and have-nots, police no go areas, housing shortages and service cutbacks. And the trusting nature of Swedes-of-a-certain-generation and the country they built makes them very vulnerable to organized criminals, who usually hail from Europe's border countries.