Back about 5 years ago I told my parents when they decided to move to an apartment I wanted to buy their house. I wanted to live in a neighborhood where people knew each other and cared for each other and not just a house on a block. Dad and I worked out a deal but, unfortunately, before they could move he had some severe memory problems and I had to move him into memory care and Mom into an assisted living apartment within walking distance. I still got the house - just not quite the happy way we all planned on.
This is a neighborhood - a great neighborhood. We were even highlighted one year for the national night out. Mom was written up as the cookie lady. I really like my neighborhood.
Last night I got home and changed clothes to go out and mow the lawn. As I was putting my hair into pigtails (because there's nothing better looking than a 50+ person in pigtails). Anyway- the door bell rang.
Visitor #1: It was Younger sister of an old friend. YS grew up the street behind and when her Dad left with my friend, YS and Mom stayed. When her Mom died YS bought the house. YS and hubby were out walking and saw my garage door up so stopped to say HI and offer to help with the lawn mowing (for $20-30). I let them know they caught me getting ready to go out and mow the lawn but thanks anyway. Before they left their neighbor was walking up the street.
Visitor #2: Fix-it guy was just walking and stopped to say HI. Gave me one of his fix-it cards and offered to mow the lawn. No mention of $$ but I'm sure that was in his mind. YS & fix-it guy left and I got the pigtail thing going and went out to mow. Oh - did I mention the yard is kind of long as in one step from needing sheep to get it cut.
So there I was out mowing the lawn in what turned out to be the hottest day so far. Sweat dripped from my brow (and my pigtails) and Greek guy from next door came out to say HI.
Visitor #3: Greek guy was about 8 or so when the family moved next door. I was late high school or college - I can't remember. So I've known him a long time. Recently he lost his job cause the of economy and moved home to help his parents and save money. We talked for a while and during the conversation he said he'll be glad to mow my lawn when he did his folks, it would be easy. That's what neighbors are for. After all my folks did so much for his family...... I said I needed the exercise but thanks. After a bit more talking his Mom came out.
Visitor #4: They are a VERY Greek family. Just like in "My big fat Greek wedding". Many of the family moved to the neighborhood over the years and all the neighborhood is somehow considered their family too. Greek Mom tells Greek guy to finish my lawn. It's not right for a lady to have to do her lawn. It was hard to convince her it was OK and GG already offered. So she went inside and GG left. I finished the front yard and came in very sweaty. Figured I'd do the back yard the next day.
Today - I came home ready to sweat again because today is actually hotter than yesterday. The back yard is all mowed and GG was just finishing up. "No problem. I was mowing ours today anyway." (He doesn't lie very well. Their yard was done last weekend. He was just doing my yard because he's a great neighbor)
That's the neighborhood I live in. Everyone watches out for everyone else. Many of us are long term neighbors or second generation neighbors. We have a couple jobs available at work. Not great jobs but better than the 2 part time jobs he's having to work right now. I'm going to do what I can to get GG a job. After all - he's my neighbor! That's what we do around here. And that's why I moved home!