Where I was brought up, everyone knew everyone. All our neighbours called to each other regularly. All the kids played with each other and spent time in each other’s houses. We definitely knew our next door neighbours almost as much as we knew ourselves. When we went to town, it took forever because we had to stop and chat to everyone we met. Because we all knew each other.
Of course, the downside to living in a town like this was that everyone knew everyone else’s business! Some people knew things about us that we didn’t even know ourselves! I think those people had a condition called ‘Boredom Syndrome’ or it may have been ‘Exaggeration Syndrome’. Then there’s another called ‘Nosey Cow Syndrome’.
Times have changed in that wee town over the years. Many of its inhabitants are total strangers to each other. Of course, many are still friendly and communicative but not to the same degree as it used to be.
Where I live now, it’s quite different. It’s a much bigger town with a bigger population. I’ve made a few friends through school and work. One or two I meet for coffee now and then and go walking with. This is how I like it. At nearly 50 years of age, I’m choosy about who I befriend. I like to suss people out before I commit to a serious friendship with them. I have many acquaintances but only a handful of very good friends.
I don’t know my close neighbours where I live now. It’s quiet and friendly and nobody seems to have a desire to invade my privacy. Call me odd if you want, but I like to be left alone. I don’t appreciate unannounced callers. I’m always busy you see.
I hate to be disturbed when I’m writing, blogging, doing yoga, and cooking. After that, I’m chatting with Stephano and entertaining Little Miss Six. Or asleep!
Don’t get me wrong folks. I do Like people…honestly, I do!
I often see the woman who lives two doors down. I haven’t actually met her yet but I think she’s odd like me. Keeps herself to herself.
Both houses each side of ours are empty. One is for sale and the one to our left is soon to be occupied. I was a proper nosey neighbour yesterday. People were coming and going all day. I was trying to figure out who the new occupants will be and what they’ll be like. It was easy to spy because my desk is right beside the window – so that I get my RDA of vitamin D.
Will it be the young couple? That would be nice. Maybe they have children who will befriend my wee girl. Or they might be very noisy!! They might have a baby who will cry during the night and keep me awake! They might have loud raving parties at the weekends. Maybe they play the drums like the neighbours in our last house. Oh Gosh No!!
Will it be the woman who went in there at 2 pm? She looked well at home, sitting in her car in the driveway. Not a care in the world chewing away, on what I think was a chocolate bar – the ones that are meant for sharing! Is she moving in? She looks a bit nosey. She might be the type that likes to sit gossiping over tea and cake – for hours. Or she might be the type that likes an occasional Friday evening glass of wine and a friendly chat with her new neighbour. Me! I wonder…..
That middle aged man who was there twice and then again this morning. I wonder does he work for the builder? Haven’t seen him before though. What kind of neighbour would he be? Might be very helpful. Looks like he knows a thing or two about life. Oh….maybe he’s good at DIY and he could do loads of little jobs for me.
Oh crikey…he might be a writer. A REAL one! He definitely looks like one. Speedy on his feet. Straight back, looking ahead like he’s on a mission. Scruffy jeans and blue shirt. Small rimmed glasses and unruly hair – Stephen King-ish. That would be brilliant. We could be buddies.
On the other hand, he kinda looks like one of Stephen King’s crazy villains. Nightmare neighbour!! He might be a peeping Tom either. Eww….no!
Oh well, I’ll just have to accept whoever it is. We can’t really choose our neighbours, can we? I just hope it’s someone who’s friendly, quiet, my age, has one child aged six, wants to join a writing group, likes to go chéile dancing, likes to go for walks (on my terms), enjoys the occasional glass of wine and Guinness, listens to André Rieu, understands good ole Irish banter & sarcasm, and knows how to boil the kettle properly. Am I asking much?