Tuesday, July 24, 2012

My work is utterly incomprehensible and is therefore full of deep significance.

The governor of Ohio is John Kasich.

I just found that out today.

More true confessions:
--I love accomplishing things ... even if it's just the "Steer Clear" safe driving course from State Farm. "Write three goals about improving my driving skills? That's my favorite!"

--I'm afraid of horses.

--Until today, I was afraid of my neighbors.

This post is about neighbors.

I was in a mood of benevolence and self-improvement all day. Did you know that 95 percent of the world's most successful leaders kept a journal? I heard that some where, so I started a professional development journal today. Did you know that 73 percent of statistics are made up on the spot?

Anyway, caught up in that mood, I organized my desk, figured out where you can watch the Perseids meteor shower in Dayton without getting in trouble (there's an all-night campout on the beach at Caesar Creek Aug. 11), followed almost 100 new accounts on my work account, and decided tonight I was going to meet my neighbors.

I drove home and changed and then made my way to Krogetto. While pulling into the parking lot I passed the man who had waited on my table at lunch yesterday at The Spaghetti Warehouse downtown -- weird, small little town that I live in. He was walking on the sidewalk with a cane because he has a terrible hunch.

I got stuff to make blueberry muffins to take along to meet my neighbors, and came home and threw them together -- but not without another trip to Krogetto for baking powder. 

After tasting one melt-in-your-mouth blueberry cream-filled muffin, I set the others on a plate and walked across the street. My heart pounded as I rang the doorbell. I'd seen my neighbor on her front porch some afternoons, so I was fairly certain she was not a drug dealer, but you never know in Belmont. 

I waited. 

I rang again, but no one came to the door, so I decided to try the house next to ours up the street. 

A beautiful lady with white hair and a soft voice with a hint of an accent I really couldn't identify opened the door and smiled when she saw the muffins. I introduced myself nervously and offered her the whole plate. Her name was Judy. 

"Oh well can I just take one? I don't think I could quite eat all that many plus it's all the calories."
She took one and then I looked awkwardly at the plate of four remaining muffins. I hadn't prepared for that one. 

"Well I'm just trying to go around and meet the neighbors," I said. 

"Well to be completely honest I'm actually letting my house go into foreclosure," she said. "I'm moving to Chicago." 

That's disappointing.

"But this is really sweet of you! Have you met your neighbor across the street? Her name is Lois."

I told Judy I had tried Lois's door, but she hadn't answered.

"Well let me walk down with you and introduce you. Maybe she'll answer if she sees my face."

So Judy and I walked down, and sure enough, Lois --also older, but really sweet-- opened up. She offered us a seat on her front porch, and seemed touched by the muffin-gesture. We then talked for about 20 minutes. Although she was a little hard to understand, I got an education about safety in Belmont, and where to buy all the drugs I could ever need.

"You know that big ol' white house down this street?"
I nodded, even though every other house on this street is big, old and white.
"That's the one. They got HARD drugs. You know, marijuana and cocaine and ... well I don't know, are there any others?"
I gave Lois my phone number in case she ever sees anything going on at the house while we're away.
"Now when you call the cops you don't even have to tell them "*****" or "*****" (our intersection), you just say **** (the number), and they know where to go."
Well that's real comforting. 

I told Lois to let me know if she ever needs anything, and she said to stop by when I see her out on her front porch. Judy and I both had to run, so we said goodbye. As I walked Judy back towards her house, we stopped Kim, the neighbor across the other street. Kim is a little younger and very friendly. And Kim and I have the same Otter Box case for our iPhones. I promised to bring Kim muffins from the next batch since I had to go.

Maybe tomorrow I'll post about horses. And Ferris wheels.

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