today i met one of our neighbors. Betty. the feisty one. the one that’s known to yell at us–the collective neighborhood–for parking in the wrong spot on the street or touching her perfectly manicured, heavily-monsanto’ed lawn.
i came home from church, planning to make family dinner for my mom and friend, Megan. but as i stepped out of my car, i felt a nudge to ask Betty to join us. she turned me down immediately, but we did end up having about a 45-minute conversation.
we talked initially about the parking situation and some of the neighbors. eventually, she began to share more about herself, where she’s from and the names of her kids. she was raised in an orphanage and had a daycare for 27 years. and as she held up a picture of her old house from northern Indiana, i began to think, she’s letting me in. and she’s really not that bad. in fact, she’s actually pretty nice.
she shared about the history or residents in our house, how the guys before us were disrespectful, or so she thought, to the house and the neighbors and the family before never took care of the place. it seemed her concern was really born of a desire to see the street clean and taken care of, and i began to understand why she was skeptical of us, these crazy hippies who chose to live together and share meals and such. the longer we talked, tho, her skepticism lessened. i think she even came to like me a little bit.
and so, i made a friend today. Betty, the not-so-crazy neighbor who loves on people well and is protective of those she cares about. just another day on Fletcher Ave.