On our street, for example, we have the more mature Italian guy down the road who, God love him, as friendly as he is, tells me the same story almost every time I run in to him. He tells me how much (or rather, how little) he paid for his home when he moved in to the area, and how he almost lost it to the bank when interest rates increased, and how much he thinks it would be worth now. Currently, he's also trying to sell a car. Which is fine. But the problem is: he keeps trying to sell it to me. He starts his sale pitch each time with, "You know, I have a really good car I'm trying to sell." I keep telling him we already have two cars. "Oh, but this one's a really good one," he replies. Ok. I get that. BUT I DON'T NEED ANOTHER CAR!
Then there's the nosy neighbour. Every street has one of those. And even though we can't prove it was him, Hubby and I are pretty sure it was he who called the local council when we were re-landscaping our front garden. He (allegedly - because we have no proof) reported, after seeing a concrete truck (that was simply replacing our old driveway) that we were concreting the whole front yard! We then had to deal with the hassle of proving to the council that, in fact, that wasn't the case at all, and we were really just trying to beautify our home. Sheesh.
And a couple of doors down we have a church (the opposite end of the road to yet another church), whose attendees quite often park their car partly over our driveway (grrr). One evening, we found a car parked at least a whole quarter over, and we were unable to get our car out to go off to dinner. We had to track down the owner of the car, who apologised profusely then moved her car so we could head out. On our return, we'd found she'd moved her car alright. Back in to the EXACT same spot we had asked her to move it from. I was not pleased. To say the least. And boy, did she hear my opinion on that one. Doubt she'll be parking back there in a hurry.
And then we have The Jogging Lady.
The Jogging Lady is well known, not only in our street, but in the surrounding streets and suburbs. Not surprisingly, she likes to jog. Like, ALL the time. And she doesn't just jog in the morning, or to and from work. She jogs at all times of the day, multiple times a day. She also, interestingly, likes to jog with fresh produce. We have a fruit and veg shop up the road, and it's not unusual to find The Jogging Lady, a bunch of celery in one hand and a Chinese cabbage in the other, jogging up to her front door, then back to the street again and up the road a little, before returning home to, presumably, cook something with her chosen vegetables. (I guess.)
But The Jogging Lady is not known only for her jogging abilities.
One day, a friend of mine arrived to drop her sons at school (our kids' school is on our street as well) and on this particular day, parked her car outside the Jogging Lady's house. She was just about to get the kids out of the car, when she noticed the Jogging Lady running up to her front door. The Jogging Lady paused, then turned and ran back down her front porch and to the side of the house (but still at the front), where my friend saw her pull down her pants, squat and....how can I put this delicately?...deposit a motion (as my Mum would call it) on her front yard. She then picked it up, with her hand, and put it in the bin.
I can just imagine your response right now. Ewwww - NO WAY - how disgusting - yuck! Well, imagine how my friend felt? And right in front of her kids who, thankfully, were still in the car and had not witnessed this event. Needless to say, she hasn't parked there since.
After reluctantly telling the story to me, my friend and I decided that something must be not be quite right with The Jogging Lady. And this thought increased even more so when, after my friend's confession, we heard more and more reports of the same thing going on at other locations around the neighbouring streets. We hoped she had someone who could help.
Then, one day, when walking home after school drop-off, my preschooler and toddler in tow, I passed The Jogging Lady's home to find her returning from yet another jog. I held my breath. Was she going inside? Please go inside, I chanted in my head. But no, she went to her little spot in the front garden, pulled down her pants and... "Oh LOOK boys! Look at that, um, garden over THERE!. No. THERE!!! Don't look THAT WAY. Look over THERE!!!"
Oh, dear. The story was confronting enough. I really didn't need to see the live footage.
And then, for a while, I didn't see the Jogging Lady all that much, and admittedly, I have not witnessed another public toilet session (thank goodness). But after a while, she returned to her beloved jogging, and once again, she was regularly seen out at all hours of the day, in the same jogging outfit, often carrying her fresh produce.
And then recently, as she jogged passed me, I happened to catch sight of the back of her leg, and running down it was....well, you can work that out.
Love Thy Neighbour? Um, no. Not always.
How about you? Got any good stories about your neighbours?ˆ
Until next time...