The Welcoming Committee

We have new neighbors!  And as far as I can tell, I don’t think the owner will be partaking in any drug sales, gunfights, or beating on his woman in the driveway anytime soon.  Or ever.  EVER!! We have such high hopes!

Barrett and Corral stopped by last night to introduce themselves and to borrow the ladder.  And the wet vac. And get some advice on how to jazz up the nearly dead lawn. This house is in such bad shape and they’ve certainly got their work cut out for them.  Many of our neighbors are in agreement that the house, and the gorgeous tree-filled lot on which it was built, would have been everyone’s first choice lot if it were available.  But for so many years, the property has been unloved and unkempt, complete with a filthy mattress and some abandoned living room furniture that got tossed behind the backyard fence. Needless to say, we are more than happy to help them out as long as they don’t thank us with a drive-by shooting. 

However, our neighborhood HOA has been shouldering the responsibility of mowing the nearly dead lawn in order to keep the whole subdivision aesthetically pleasing, not just this house and that house but as many houses as possibly.  The HOA has been tending to at least 3 other homes on our street alone.  Sign of the times, I guess.  In fact, only a few days ago, the HOA president had the lawn taken care of next door, before Barrett and Corral were even known to exist.

About 2 hours ago, the HOA president rang our doorbell. When I answered, the first thing he said to me was a very unpleasant, “Is that YOUR car parked in the driveway next door?”  Well, no.  Because I DON’T LIVE THERE.  But that’s too obvious and this man was on a mission, looking to pick a fight.  I could already tell by the snarky, I’m-The-President attitude. 

I explained to him that the neighbors had just moved in last night and was just getting ready to tell him how super-duper nice they seem to be when he  interrupted to remind me, “Well, the HOA just paid to have their lawn cut a few days ago.  Looks like they’re gonna be paying the HOA back for that!”

Okay, jerk.  Look here – I like these people and I have a feeling I won’t be calling the cops on them every other day.  The fact that Barrett had just been over to our house last night inquiring about the grass was a very good sign.  YOU BOARD MEMBERS SHOULD BE SHARING IN MY OPTIMISM, FOR CRIMINY’S SAKE!  And because I don’t have a lot of optimism to go around, I use it sparingly.  Don’t blow this, Prez.

So I have to ask:

What happened to introductions? What happened to bringing your new neighbors a dinner casserole? What happened to lending them your ladders and your wet vacs and offering advice on how to deal with this crappy Florida grass?  What happened to saying, “Awww, shucks.  The HOA just mowed their lawn a few days ago.  Maybe we could consider it a Welcome to the Neighborhood gift!”

What happened to being a nice neighbor?


About Dena

I'm a suburban Clevelander by way of Oklahoma City, by way of North Florida, by way of Southern Maryland, by way of Upper Michigan, by way of Northern Italy, by way of Lower Michigan, by way of Texas. Because of living in so many places, I have something in common with almost everyone I meet. I love reading, writing, and American history (especially reading or writing about American history). I'm interested in culture of place, historical trauma, and writing about the kinds of histories most people don't know about.
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2 Responses to The Welcoming Committee

  1. Beth says:

    Ahhh, sounds to me like the HOA president doesn’t have a lot of power in his real life so has to be a jackass in his HOA life. Loser.

    I hope the new neighbours are settling in okay and that they’re as nice as they seem so far!


  2. Chris says:

    We’ve got a few of those aholes on our HOA too, but most of them are okay. It’s hard not to just punch them in the mouth, isn’t it?

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