Monday, March 9, 2009

On the street where I live

Hubby and I are extremely lucky, on the whole. We live on a street populated with really nice people. Sure, we aren't BFFs with all of them, but we socialize, we talk over the fence, and I have playdates with our neighbors across the street. Sometimes we have dinner. There are two lovely teenage girls I would trust to watch Toast, should the occasion arise. Then there's the guy who lives just to the North of us.

Okay, yeah, we talk over the fence, and he's nice enough. But he's also kind of a that whole "bachelor, not interested in anyone but himself" kind of way. We know he has had, on occasion...many occasions...drugs in his house. Because he's told us. And weapons...there are the weapons. He didn't elaborate on that one. We sometimes see him drinking lots with some other people on his deck (but you know, we've been known to do that too)...and more than once we've smelled the exotic "tobacco" he and his buddies take part in.

Okay, so he's a little wild. None of that is my business. And there is the "ookey" factor...he had a high "ookey" factor..just creeped me out. But still, for the most part he was pretty quiet and never caused us any harm.

There were the fireworks, which he would usually set off in the middle of the night, in a HEAVILY treed neighborhood. Bottle rockets. Illegal "free flying" fireworks. Now, this is just stupid. Lots of trees and closely spaced houses + flying fire? Yeah, that makes me really irritated with you and causes me to use some very unseemly language when I speak of you.

So we've noticed that this winter he's been gone....really gone. I figured he was wintering in Florida...seems like the type. And he's self-employed, so you know, it was logical. Last week I was driving past his house (the rear of his house faces the north side of our house, so unless we drive or walk around the block we don't see the front of his house) and there is a for sale sign in the front yard. I think to myself "Let's throw a party, the weird neighbor is moving out!" I was pretty excited.

Tonight Hubby and I were talking to our "corner neighbors" (they live on the corner) and I mentioned that it looked like he had moved. She informed me that he DIED. Huh? Yeah. I had this weird feeling. You know, I didn't know him, I didn't really like him or dislike him, I said some mean things about him and ignored him the rest of the time. But still, it's kind of weird to get news like this. Apparently his family spoke to the corner neighbors and said they'd rather keep it quiet, that he had "not been doing well, and didn't know how poorly he was doing". That can mean a lot of things, but none of them are cheery.

I don't really have a point to this story, but it's worth writing about, because it caught me by surprise and is just such a surreal situation. Yes, people die. But when someone who is apparently pretty young and (from the outside) in fairly good health, it's always kind of a shock. Moreover when you have mixed feelings about that person.

What a random thing to find out.


Carol, Song of Joy said...

Couple of responses. 1. We NEVER really know all we think we do about another person. 2. Just because someone is dead, doesn't change who they were in life. Sounds like you treated him OK, in spite of what you thought. I'd be happy to have you for a neighbor any day. :)

Coffeemomma said...

yes, of course, you always treat someone respectfully...well, I try to. I just have such mixed feelings about hearing's so...strange. I hope he's at peace.

hoppytoddle said...

Whoa! So, do you think he did himself in literally, or just by circumstance, or was he ill? I hate it when people don't just say it. Ok, I know it's because they probably don't want to hear it, but my imagination is a powerful one. I think we should write a story about some glorious thing he did that resulted in death to overcome our assumptions.