Welcome to the Neighborhood

When I was about four years old, my family moved into the house that I spent the bulk of my childhood in, and where my parents still live. When we first moved in, there was a family living in the house across the street who had a boy about the same age as my sister and me. Unfortunately, they moved a few years later and the house remained empty for four or five years.

Our neighborhood had a lot of other familes, including two of my best friends Tracy and Lindsay. Even though Lindsay’s family lived on the street behind us, I actually met her at Sunday School. I know — you are shocked to hear that I went to Sunday School. Let me be clear, I think we went a total of six times before swim meets, soccer games and various other sporting events starting getting in the way. Thankfully, during those six Sundays, I was able to meet Lindsay and form one of the best friendships that would remain with me all the way through eighth grade.

Lindsay and me - 1993
Lindsay and me – 1993
Another year, another soccer team
Another year, another soccer team

Early in our friendship, Lindsay (or her mom) introduced me to the family that lived down the street from them, including their daughter Tracy, who was the same age as Lindsay and me. And then there were three.

Here we are doing our best Sandy impression before the 7th grade sock hop

We spent many weekends and day throughout the summer riding bikes around the neighborhood and “playing” at each other’s houses. I remember going over the Lindsay’s house to catch frogs in the swamp in her backyard, playing basketball (a sport that I was horrible at, and Lindsay was great), carpooling to soccer games in her parent’s van, which had a tv and video console, and making totally inedible food in her easy bake over. At Tracy’s house, I remember jumping on her trampoline, playing Sonic the Hedgehog on her Sega System (more accurately, watching since I was horrible at video games) and making apple crisp with her mother and younger sister. I also remember countless birthday parties including one where we camped out in a giant tent in Lindsay’s front yard and another where we got to play dress up, put on make up and have a tea party at Tracy’s.

Here I am all dolled up at Tracy's party.
Here I am all dolled up at Tracy’s party.

They were great neighbors and amazing friends. I can’t imagine living near anyone else.

When I was about ¬†12 or 13 years old, someone finally moved into the house across the street. It was a younger family with a 2 year old girl. I remember being so excited to get new neighbors. One morning, my mom, sister and I made monkey bread to bring over to our neighbors. In our household, we made monkey bread on Thanksgiving, Christmas morning and sometimes for birthday mornings. It was essentially the nicest gesture that we could think of. I remember wrapping it up, walking across the street and ringing the doorbell to introduce ourselves and welcome the new family to the neighborhood. It was very “Americana” and I loved it.

Matt and I have lived in our new apartment for a few months now. We haven’t really made many new friends and no one has brought us monkey bread.

Well, after the last four days, we’ve made our presence known… at least to our neighbors on our floor. Since Sunday, we’ve had multiple people come by our apartment to tell us that our utility closet was flooding. Every time we take a shower, a large pool of water has been seeping our of the utility closet and into the communal hallway. The maintenance crew has set up “wet floor/caution” signs and large fans to try and dry out the area. Unfortunately, the flooding continues to happen.

The best thing about living in an apartment building is that when something breaks, you can call someone to come fix it and you don’t have to pay a thing. The bad think about living in an apartment is when something breaks, your neighbors know and are annoyed with you.

Do you think we will be getting any “welcome to the neighborhood” gifts soon? Maybe new plumbing?