It’s a Beautiful Day in the Neighbourhood but Don’t Go Outside

Sunny Days, Oh…Sunny, Sunny Days

Having moved in the dead of what turned out to be the worst winter (for our area and many others) in the last 40 years we have yet to properly meet all of our neighbours. We have, of course, met those on either side of us. Partly out of necessity. Our properties touch. Good to know those people. And, it turns out, they are good people to know. Lovely. We are lucky.

We have met the lady across the road. Jean. Everybody knows Jean. And loves her. She’s a delight. And an excellent source of information (aka street gossip). We met her before we moved in; when we brought over the first car load from my parents’ house. She’s been here 60-something years. Her son lives down the street. She’s a widow (that first meeting she shared with us that her husband had a fishing accident and drowned on Lake Simcoe). She has an extension ladder. In the shed. Just don’t ever lock the fucking shed. Okay Jean. She’s everybody’s mistress. Sitting in her big bay window. You have to wave at Jean. Mean Jean. Only she’s not. She’s lovely.

There are other neighbours we have met. A gal down the road. Her wee one is nearly the same age as ours. So things looked promising. A friend for our little guy – hooray. And her family purchased holiday dessert platters from me. Which I was grateful for, having moved to a new city I was worried about building a new client base. However, four months in, we have learned to watch out for her.

Aside from what others have told us, she irks me. There’s just something there that doesn’t sit well with me. Or the hubby. So. Our kids never play together. Our choice. And that is validated on a consistent basis. Not because she completely ignores my existence entirely. Acknowledges those around me (hubby, wee one, our dog, other neighbours). But not me. Odd. Not to mention she flaunts her income. Disability. Apparently she has knee troubles. Which never stopped her from constantly shoveling snow or running around with her dog…

Why do I even care?

Beyond the fact that she tells anyone who will listen that she gets to stay home all day and do nothing to earn her income (oh, did I mention she lives at home, with her parents…who pay for everything for her and her child), I spent two years filling out paperwork, going to doctors (again and again), appealing decisions, testifying only to be denied. And today she was riding an assistance scooter up and down the street. As if it were a toy. Bitch. I can barely afford my medications. I struggle daily with several serious health issues. Namely Type 1 Diabetes. But according to my government, the two types of insulin I inject 5-7 times a day (to not just manage my diabetes but to keep me alive) is NOT life-sustaining therapy. So I do not qualify. Go figure.

So. That gal really pisses me off. REALLY. And, for more than just her disability cheque.


Today we met more neighbourhood people. I can’t call them neighbours because we are not sure exactly where they live. The following events occurred in front of our next door neighbour’s house but these people appeared out of nowhere and I didn’t recognize them. But that’s not terribly out-of-norm. Like I said. Bad winter.

It was a lovely day. I should have been painting the trim in my living room. We opted for an outside afternoon. All of us popped out after lunch. Eventually we worked our way out to the front yard. Raked our barely existent front lawn. Pulled a bunch of shit out of the poorly-thought-out-and-thrown-together garden. Meh. But it was fun. I love to garden, work outdoors, and get dirty. I have to admit something. I secretly (well not so much anymore, right?) really, really miss my old gardens. Nearly a decade I worked on those yards. Even brought a few plants, bulbs and seeds from there. High hopes.

Forgive me. I digress. The wee one and I are raking. Well. I am raking and he is pretending to be a combine harvester. And I hear the screech of tires behind me. I see a young guy, probably late teens, on the sidewalk and a gold jeep-thing pulled up on an angle. I also hear a woman’s voice. LOUD. Riddled with all the bad words.

Please note: I am very aware that I occasionally, and when necessary, slip a curse word in my posts. I also curse now and then colloquially, but never without testing the waters first and NEVER in front of wee ones.

The wee one asks, why that lady yelling? I gently shush him. And a stout, rough looking woman with badly bleached and matted hair pops out, on to the sidewalk with a tee shirt that requires pants. Sadly, on this day, from what we witnessed, the woman had opted not to wear any. In fact, she was not wearing anything at all under that tee shirt. Cursing up a storm. In the face of that young man. Enough is enough. Excuse me, I’ve got a little one over here! I holler at her. And she hollered back, mind your own fucking business! I kind of figured that was coming. Then you should keep it at home!

That’s a sight not a vision, I hear behind me. Hubby has arrived.

And she is still going at this guy. And us. You fucking left the fucking bag…it’s none of your business if I wanna talk to my son…well there you go, fuck off. Car door slams. And that little ray of sunshine zoomed off. To who knows where; hopefully somewhere there’s a spare pair of pants. Or a blanket. Or a tablecloth. Something. Did I mention she wasn’t wearing any shoes? Yep. No shoes. I wonder how many places she would receive service…

Hubby went off to work. The wee one and I had a dinner date. Then read a chapter of Narnia (I must pause a moment and celebrate because I adore the Chronicles and it is divine that the little one is enjoying our first go a reading a picture-free/chaptered book) and snuggled.

Gorgeous day outside. But it’s indoors for the win.

3 thoughts on “It’s a Beautiful Day in the Neighbourhood but Don’t Go Outside

  1. UPDATE – the pantless harpy does live on our street…a block down (thankfully); our paths nearly crossed again as the wee one and I were walking home from the store…she didn’t see us. But we saw her. Same shirt, different day. No pants (or shoes) again.

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