We’re within a few weeks of officially living in our house for two years now. The neighbors up and down our street have mostly remained the same. A few of the houses have sold, but the people in the houses on the three sides of us and the ones across the street are the same people that were there when we moved in. I’ve mentioned before that we don’t exactly seem to fit in in our neighborhood. We don’t drive pickups or SUVs. We don’t have a dog or a cat or kids. We don’t have a gas mower, weed wacker, and edge trimmer.
We do have a few things in common with some of the people around us though. On one side of us, our neighbors moved in within a week of us two years ago. They don’t have kids or a dog, and their cat doesn’t really seem like it does it anything outside of sitting around, so I consider it more a house plant than a real pet. Hey, we’ve got houseplants too! We even manage to keep them alive most of the time.
We’ve also both been fighting the same problems with soaking wet lawns/landscaping and losing plants. We think it might be high snowfall a couple winters ago. We also think it might be the fact that some of our neighbors water their lawns each day every day regardless of the weather and recent rainfall. It also might be the fact we live at the bottom of big hill where all the water collects and on top of a huge amount of clay, so the water never really soaks down into the ground.
Whatever it is, the other night we stood outside and chatted with them about the problems and people for about 30 minutes. We once mentioned having a little community BBQ or potluck and they thought it was a good idea.
Rhiannon and I don’t seem to make random friends. Most of the people we hang out with or know is due to some common activity or past acquaintance – people we knew from college or people we play volleyball with. One would think being neighbors with someone would be commonality enough, but, like I said, I don’t always feel like we fit in. Maybe I don’t feel like we fit in because we make fun of people who play air guitar to 70’s hippie rock that is cranked up loud enough to cause vases to fall off of speakers and closed windows of the surrounding houses to vibrate. (True story – you would have chuckled, too, if it wasn’t 10:30 pm…)
The people two houses down just moved in last fall, and they seem similar in age and life-situation to us as well. We see potential. Maybe these people will become new friends and we’ll feel more like where we grew up – in a community vs. a place where our house is.
I’ve heard that along with learning science and reading and math, one of the biggest things kids learn in school is how to get along socially.
I guess we’re just a little behind the times. I’m going to remain optimistic.