Monday, July 14, 2008

Beware Neighbors Bearing Gifts

We live in a pretty tight knit little neighborhood.  We are mostly all friends and you can't burp without everyone knowing about it.  So about 2 1/2 years ago the house next door was up for sale and the whole neighborhood was stalking every person who came to look at it.


One weekend while I was out of town, my cell phone was ringing off the hook. " There is a moving truck unloading", another call beeping in, "I spy 4 bikes in the garage".  "It looks like a couple in late 40's with 2 teenagers, 1 boy, 1 girl----paydirt! Babysitters!"  The whole neighborhood was a buzzing!

When I returned home, I jumped right into the mix.  "Okay, it looks like 2 cars", the phone calls going around were enough to make Ma Bell dizzy.  We stalked them stakeout style and every movement was dutifully reported.  We would have been sitting outside playing with the kids so we could wave and say "Hi", but this was the middle of February, so we had to be more resourceful.

We were absolutely chomping at the bit to find out who moved in.  Way worse than any little old ladies having a gossip fest.  What to do, what to do....We got it!  We put together a welcome basket!  A big beautiful basket of homemade bread and wine, scented candle etc.  All kinds of housewarming goodies for a welcome to the neighborhood.  And a perfect excuse to knock on the door.

Now timing is everything.  Nibby women need to find time to sneak over without all the kids in tow, that could be too overwhelming and cut short any information gathering.  Can't be in the daytime (they'll be at work or school), not during dinner hours (that's just rude).  So on a cold, dark February night around 8, Myself and another stalker(we'll call her MP) head over bringing our welcome basket.  There only seems to be 1 small light on in the rear of the house.  Are they home?  Only 1 way to find out.  

Excitement mounts as we ring bell.  Nothing, nothing, wait... some one is coming.... it looks like the son.  He answers the door, looking slightly confused as two women with a huge basket are standing at the door in 20 degrees and darkness.  I decide to make a great first impression "Hi, we'd like to talk to you about Jesus!".  "Okay" he replies.  I now swallow my tongue and am convinced I am damned to hell.  MP steps in to save me, "She's just kidding, we're you neighbors and just wanted to stop by and welcome you to the neighborhood and drop off this basket"  good save!  "Well, thanks, come on in" is the reply.  We step into the still darkened entryway and MP continues "Are your parents home?"  The response......"No, it's just my wife and I who live here and she's not home."  We barely pull ourselves together to make a speedy but polite exit.

MP and I scuttle back to my house embarrassed and laughing our butts off over a glass of wine. The older people we saw were his parents helping them move in.  He and his wife are newlyweds and just look really young for their ages.  This will work well for them as the years go on, but for now we are pretty sure he was offended, as they have hardly spoken to us since. 

We really need to improve our surveillance  techniques for the future.

Stumble Upon Toolbar

9 comments:

Tom said...

Now your kids can be babysitters for theirs. Talk about your suburban irony!

Chris H said...

I would love to move into your neightbourhood.. just for the gift basket! LOL How could he be offended? You came bearing gifts! derrrr

Jenny said...

HA! Yeah...we had quite an experience with the last peeps in the home across the cul-de-sac. I took cookies over to welcome them, and she said "You're not gonna stalk me, are you?" Can you imagine? It's up for sale now, so we've been doing the surveillance, too. We'll see what happens!

Manic Mom said...

Heck I didn't get a gift basket when we moved in. You should have your people call my people & maybe we can set something up for me. I swear I'll act totaly surprised! Hugs

Half-Past Kissin' Time said...

Oh, that's awesome. Cracked me up. You should do what my daughter and I did; we were the first ones to build a home here (8 years later, there are 62 homes). Kendall and I started a neighborhood newspaper about 4 years ago. Each month, we featured two families and another neighbor who had a special hobby, talent, etc. Through our paper, we met everyone in the neighborhood and feel very "connected." Today, our newspaper is retired, but we have a website. It was a lot of work, but I'm glad we did it.

BusyDad said...

Dang it! I've probably scared away a half a dozen gift basket bearers in the last couple years. They need to be quicker with that "just kidding! we're your neighbors" follow up line.

Connie said...

I wish the Mormons would bring a gift basket.....

They just send one poor old guy over to get the info on you and then a memo goes out...at least I think that is what happened!

texasholly said...

Never take me with you. I would have died of laughter after your opening and then no one could have saved you and the food would have just been thrown as we ran in horror and laughter...

Thanks for linking!

(F)redddy said...

I'm sure this is way off point, but I'm thrilled you actually took your new neighbors something to welcome them to the hood. This is, almost, unheard of these days. When I moved into my house my neighbors didn't talk to me for months. I STARTED the street's tradition of welcoming new neighbors with a gift basket and have been told, more than once, how much it meant to my uber fantastic neighbors. Good on you.

Related Posts with Thumbnails