…in the neighborhood, in the neighborhood, in the neigh-bor-hoo-ood. These are the people in the neighborhood. They’re the people that you meet when you’re walking down the street. They’re the people that you meet each daaaaaay……” Okay. Thank you to Sesame Street for that lovely little jingle that taught us so much. So can I just tell you how much I love my new neighborhood?
Perhaps one of the saddest things about leaving Altus was leaving my little corner of the world where I knew my neighbors, and they knew me, and they had watched my kids tricycle around the cul-de-sac–that circle where William learned to ride a bike, where we watched fireworks every Fourth of July, where we stood together with our neighbors watching the sky for tornadoes and hail, and where we brought Hunter home from the hospital for the first time. So many wonderful things happened there, and our precious neighbors were there doing life right along with us. That’s how it is with neighbors–they become a part of each other’s lives just by living it together.
I was most concerned about moving away from our comfortable little circle of neighbors. You never know what your new neighborhood will be like. Will there be someone creepy next door? Will there be good wholesome friends for my kids down the street? Will it be safe to go for evening walks? You know how it is. You find out every possible thing you can about the house you’re buying, but when it comes to researching the people in the neighborhood, there’s only so much you can do besides just flat out moving in and getting to know them.
When I prayed and asked God for this house, one of the things on my list was for him to give me a best friend that lived in the neighborhood. Now, the jury’s still out on that, because I haven’t met everyone yet. But I have totally fallen in love with all of the people that I have met in my neighborhood so far. I have thought many times in my life that I want to write a book, and I have actually started one or two, but. If I ever wanted to write a book about people, I would write it about these folks.
Bill and I marvel and laugh each day about the wonderful, funny, one-of-a-kind personalities of those that live around us. I seriously feel like I am reading a book each time I listen to stories about Mr. G who thinks he owns the neighborhood, just because he used to own all the property it is built on, and each time I gaze out of the window over my kitchen sink to see Mr. B sitting in his nightly perch with his cold drink, and each time I notice Ms. C carefully tending her garden and deck. Mr. D mows for Ms. C, Ms. C recycles for the whole bunch, since she “doesn’t get her money’s worth” of the recycling can, and Mrs. B knocks on my back door to remind me when it’s trash day or to offer to carry my empty water jugs to Ms. C’s blue bin. It’s just like a story, I tell you.
I really hope to spend some time blogging in a little more detail about my neighborhood, because it is so delightful and full of humor. We still have a few homegrown tomatoes and jalapenos left from Mr. S and Mrs. P who brought them over to us the week we moved in. (We might be the only folks in B’ham who don’t have our own tomato garden.) And the day the firetrucks came (another story here, perhaps?), which was the same day the cable guy brought our internet and the moving crew came to help us with the last truck full, Mrs. L came to see if everything was alright, and to tell us that Mr. B is on staff at a local church and that the whole neighborhood are “Christian people, and most of us go to church.” She was just precious. I keep hoping to venture down to her “2-story brick around the corner” to visit soon.
So many fun details here are just a story waiting to be told. If you are a lover of the Jan Karon Mitford series, then you know why I love my neighborhood. It is it’s own Mitford. Perhaps that’s why Mitford is so well-loved–it is a character study in small-town life. I always thought Altus was a southwestern Mitford, and I could have written a book there too.
I don’t know if I’ll ever have time for a book, but I’ll aim for a blog post every now and then to give you a peek into my quaint little neighborhood.