Welcome to the Neighborhood
Copyrighted by Lorna Tedder. Originally published in Third Degree of Separation.
You never Â know Â whatâ€™s Â going Â on Â behind Â the Â walls, whether youâ€™re on the outside thinking about the inside or vice versa. Last night, while we were having a Gathering and messing around with quantum physics, our neighbors had no idea what we were up toâ€¦and we didnâ€™t know what was going on outside either.
Grendel, our little ADHD puppy, has a protective streak in Â himâ€”and a ferocious, all-business bark that frightened my guests when Â they heard it. We couldnâ€™t imagine what he was barking at. We werenâ€™t Â even playing with the Ouija board and the only entities inside the house were definitely friendly ones!
Since one of my guests just had a bit of eye surgery done, I transported her to and from my house. Umâ€¦by car. I havenâ€™t perfected the other techniques yet.
On the way to her house when the Gathering was over, we saw a Â couple of houses down the street with toilet paper hanging from trees, Â bushes, roof tops. It was the good kind, tooâ€”not that â€œlowest bidderâ€ Â stuff they buy for the stalls at work.
This afternoon, the girls and I missed our showing of Tristan and Isolde, one of my favorite legends and my favorite Arthurian Tarot card for the 2 of Cups, so we headed home early. When the girls and I reached our street, we noticed most of the toilet paper had been cleaned upâ€¦but our next door neighbors had been snared in the random fun last night and their yard was still trashed. In hindsight, Grendelâ€™s fearsome barking probably scared the vandals away from our house.
The elderly couple who had lived there recently sold the house. Busy as we are, we hadnâ€™t seen a new neighbor move in, so I sent the girls to check on them and let them know the girls would clean up the Â vandalism. The girls happily obliged me, with nary a grumble.
Little Â did Â we Â know Â that Â the Â former Â neighbors Â had moved out, another elderly couple had moved in a few days ago, and they were too Â sick to get out and clean up the yard. Not only that, but theyâ€™d put up a Martin Luther King flag right be- fore the toilet papering had been done. Â Theyâ€™d been worried that their flag was unwelcome in the neighborhood and theyâ€™d been vandalized because of it. They werenâ€™t well enough to walk outside or down the street to see that the deed had been random.
TheÂ girls Â gave Â them Â a Â little Â nicer Â welcome Â to Â the neighborhoodÂ andÂ were Â done Â cleaningÂ upÂ the Â mess Â inâ€” seriouslyâ€”about two minutes.
Definitely a feel-good moment for everyone. Me, I got a chuckle. The witch next door was glad to be of help, and very proud of her daughters, too. And Grendel, well, he got a treat.