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Sunday, April 17, 2011

Luck of the Draw

Lost in the bedlam that has dominated my life for months, was a constant reminder of a some truly good fortune.  Namely, my next doors neighbors and overall neighborhood is filled with very, very good people.  The folks directly to the south of us have been in their house for 40 years or so.  They have seen countless families move in and out.  Their own family, I think 4 kids but am unsure, have grown up in town, started families of their own, and moved away.  They provide a nice stability that every neighborhood should have.  The house is quiet, well maintained and full of every experience a household should have.  Our relationship with its owners is cordial and should I ever have a big problem I am certain I could ask them for help.  The age difference makes it tough.  They are retired and I really can't see talking about the Caveman @ Bowery Ballroom with them.  Long story short we are thankful they are next door.

Same goes with our neighbors to the north.  They have the same make up as our family: husband my age, wife and toddler daughter.  They moved in about a year after us and we have been friends ever since.  As our schedules are very different we rarely socialize with them, especially in the winter.  But it's days like this I remember how lucky we are.  Never mind they routinely watch our daughter if we need help in a pinch.  They watch our aged, ill cat when we get away for a weekend.  Let's not forget taking out the trash should we be away, too.  Amazing.  And since I am tool/project/mechanically inept, I am staring at an assembled basketball hoop in our driveway.  That is a good neighbor.  And as any home project there were issues.  Package was shorted parts so we had to go back to the box store to get the missing pieces.  All and all every bit of two hours out of his Sunday.  And there was never any hesitation in his voice when I asked for help.  Oh, and don't get me started on how we totally spaced on his birthday yesterday.  Thankfully my wife made a wonderful dinner he was able to enjoy.  But if we are still keeping score...  I am probably down dozens of favors.  I will effort to get em back though.

Reminds me that although things have changed from generations ago, they have indeed stayed the same.   There is rampant hypocrisy in the suburbs.  But that is only the partial story.  I liken it to how we are trying to raise our daughter.  We understand she is wound tight a bit and socially more mature than her age.  So, if she gets impatient or is unsure of how to channel her anger, we just hope that around others she can remain poised and confident.  Moreover, be polite.  Please, no thank you...  Move on.

For the most part she is all of that and more.  Her rage and hostility presents primarily around us.  That is ok.  We handle it, try to move on, and grow.

Meaning?  There might be horrific and hurtful things, physically, emotionally, who knows?, happening next door.  But we all have the potential to be civil and friendly to one another.  And maybe by doing so all of the other evils and horrors become easier to handle.  Hell, there is enough craziness out here to keep or minds occupied.  I paid $60 to fill a Japanese 4 cylinder today!!!  We owe it to ourselves to be better.   We cannot be expected to count all of our neighbors as friends (clearly.)  It is worth looking into though.

Glad I did.

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