Neighbours

14 July 2007

The second stage of a revolution started yesterday. I went out to the front verandah at 3ish and found a box of food scraps. It was a large polystyrene box full of wholemeal bread crusts, beetroot tops, assorted vegie scraps and old baby spinach. The revolutionary's note was short and sweet, it said:

THOUGHT YOU MIGHT LIKE THIS FOR THE CHOOKS.
ANG

Ang, is our next door neighbour, Angie.

I have been trying to build up a neighbourly relationship with the people we share our street with. We live at the end of what most modern Australians call a cul-de-sac, and what I call a dead end. It's a tiny one lane road that further down has a small family run business for making roof trusses but across from us is just pine trees that surrounded and hide a deserted saw mill. There are four other families I'd like to be more friendly with. Ang is on one side with her husband and one ten year old son, there is another young family on the other side of them with a dad, a SAHM and two small boys. On the other side of us is a young couple who were married last year. Next to them is an older couple.

When we walk by we say hello and we talk over the fence with Angie, but that's all we do. I decided a year ago that we should be more supportive of each other - more neighbourly. So I started giving spare eggs and vegies to those four families in the hope that would spark reciprocation of some sort. That we'd all start sharing and giving, look after each other if there was a crisis, and be neighbourly. I didn't want us to be in each others pockets, I don't want neighbours to drop in for coffee every morning, but I wanted to share and I wanted all of us to know that if any of us needed help, neighbours would be there to provide it. Well, my gifts were received gratefully but it always ended there. The revolution that started with one step, ended after a walk around the block.

Until yesterday.

Efforts
will now be increased. The box will be returned with fresh vegies, a few eggs and the hope that the revolution will be in full swing by Christmas.