Tuesday, February 03, 2009
Rescheduling my lunch appointment was no big deal, and I had been to the grocery store a few days earlier, so I hunkered down to wait for the thaw. After the snow stopped I opened my garage to see how things looked outside. It was pretty clear that, unless the driveway got shoveled, I wouldn't be going anywhere for a while. In the past, before the accident, I would have loved a day like this! Having a reason to call off work that couldn't be held against me. (Of course, being in the hospitality industry, my boss would probably have called me the night before and had me spend the night at the hotel so that I would already be at work in the morning.) In those pre-accident days I would have been out in the snow, having a snowball fight with friends, shoveling the driveway, or just walking in the snow, enjoying the view of the world covered with white.
Now, I get the view from my window. Speaking of the view from my window, about an hour after I'd been in the garage I went into my office to check my email. I heard a scraping noise, which drew my attention to the window. What I saw was my neighbor to the east, and a person that I didn't recognize, shoveling my driveway. It appeared that they were almost done, which was amazing, given the amount of snow and the short amount of time since the last time I looked!
I decided to open the garage and say hello and thank you. When I opened the door I discovered that in addition to my neighbor from the house to the east and the stranger, my neighbor from the west and another person I did not know were also helping shovel my walk. The two men I didn't know were from houses just down the street. The four of them had only been working on the driveway for ten minutes and they already had it clear!
A few days later I had the opportunity to repay the favor to my neighbor to the east. I awoke to some very quiet thumping noises and finally decided to open the garage and see what was going on outside. I discovered my neighbor banging on ice that had covered her garage door. (Which is odd because none of the other garage doors in the neighborhood had ice problems. Either there's a problem with her gutter, or her garage door is a geographic oddity!) I loaned her a chisel, but she wasn't able to get at all of the ice, so I gave her a ride to work.
Lately I've felt less connected to the world. (Largely because the loss of my legs and the current weather patterns don't go well together. See the last update for more on that topic.) Yet, somehow, this snow storm actually connected me more with my neighbors. I also find this humorous, because when I lived in apartments I never wanted to know my neighbors. That was a trait that I picked up from a friend of mine. (You know who you are.) (If you don't know who you are, here's a clue, we lived in the same apartment complex in Corpus Christi.) Good neighbors are important, and I'm thankful that I have them!
We are very pleased that, even before previously unbeknownst to you, you do indeed have caring good neighbors. We have been blessed with them in the past but, after forty years in the same house, there are few of the old ones left. There are a couple of generations between us and most of our neighbors and that makes it difficult to develope good caring neighbors. If we should have need for them at some time in the future, we hope we will be surprised just as you were.
Harry and Lilla
That's awesome that your neighbors came together to help you. We are fortunate to live in a neighborhood of elderly people. It's great because my husband shovels their walks and we trade food from the garden...in return they watch our house like hawks whenever we aren't here. The younger people in the neighborhood aren't as friendly but they are cordial. I think living a little life gives all neighbors perspective.
Now I must go enjoy my 2 hour delay! I love working at a high school!
Our nearest neighbors are 1/2 mile away, but they have been helpful and neighborly to us in the past. The good thing is they're far enough away that we can't hear them. ;-)
Hopefully with this warm weather, you're able to get out a little more easily.
See you at Chuck & Monica's in a couple of weeks, I hope!
Take care and I promise to keep my promise too you - I will see you soon!!