I accidentally did another favor for my neighbors – and I don’t regret or begrudge it.
I wrote of being able to do several favors for them, several years ago. Those favors have been returned like bread upon the waters, 7-fold. The ‘rot-proof’, pressure-treated posts that support our common fence are over 30 years old, and they rotted.
As I sadly stood considering the tilting fence, morosely calculating what it was going to cost in money, energy, time, and lost skin, the neighbor asked me if I would mind if he repaired it. His son runs a small landscaping firm, so he had access to a powered post-hole auger. His first thought was that he could bore out the concrete bases….FAIL!
Digging them out by hand was difficult and time-consuming. Suddenly, inspiration struck. He cut 2 feet off a 10-foot panel, moved the necessary holes two feet, and spliced the orphan back in at the end. All he asked, was $100 for lumber and supplies. The wife tipped him an extra $20 for saving me the trouble.
Recently, his first-marriage daughter stayed with them for several days. They are both non-smokers, so she sits on the front porch to puff. One spring evening, in the dark of 9:30 PM, I left the living room to use the powder-room, next to the front door. The pebbled glass in the lower pane made car lights on their driveway seem like they’re on our front lawn. I stood tippy-toe to look out, but it wasn’t their car. I turned on the light, and peered out again. The car quickly backed out, and drove off.
I hadn’t got my ass back on the couch, when the phone rang. They were at a friend’s, and the daughter had called. While she was sitting, smoking, some guy had just pulled into the driveway and said, “Wanna come over here, Babe?” She’s a sturdy lass of 25, and could probably handle any problem, but she stepped inside, locked the door, and called them. Would I please take a look and see if there was any trouble?
I told her that my neighborly nosiness had already driven him off. She was reassured on an immediate basis, but now she, his daughter and I, were all somewhat perplexed. Was this just some random guy, approaching random women? In the dark, neither of us got a good look at the driver, the car, or the licence plate. In our quiet, safe suburban subdivision, do we have a hooker, or a drug dealer working?
The wobbly wife wants a new rail installed on the deck steps. The old ones are leaning as badly as the fence was, and she needs safe support, when she follows the new puppies that you’ll read all about in a month, out onto the lawn. Maybe I can leverage this into some design/installation help from the amateur carpenter husband. 😀