metro mama

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Love Thy Neighbour

"For what do we live, but to make sport for our neighbours, and laugh at them in our turn?" --Jane Austen

As you know from my posts, we’ve been having a smashing time with our new neighbours.

Our fences are being built this week. The two couples who live south of us are old friends who bought side-by-side homes. They are getting a gate between their backyards.

We’ve been socializing a lot and I think a gate between our yard would be nice too.

The problem is, I’m not sure how to bring it up. If I do, and they’re not interested, it will be really uncomfortable (kind of like if you’ve been dating someone for a while and you ask if you’re dating exclusively and they get all embarrassed and say they’re not ready for a commitment yet).

Maybe it’s not a good idea anyway--what if they move out and some asshole moves next door?

Some people believe you shouldn’t get too close to your neighbours. Big Papa was my next door neighbour when we started dating (yep, I actually married The Boy Next Door. I gazed longingly at him over my fence for a few days before I got up the nerve to ask him out. I engineered a meeting by waiting until a few minutes before he came home to wash my car in my short shorts. The rest is history.) A few friends advised against it. One of them said not to shit in my own backyard. I’m glad I didn’t listen--look how well it worked out.

Back to the present. What to do…dare we proclaim our love?

I can’t believe I find myself fearing rejection again. It feels like my twenties.



Blogger the mad momma said...

i write from india. here we are in and out of neighbours homes all dya. the concept of privacy doesnt really exist. and just like you zealously guard your privacy we guard our relationship with them. its amazing to find such radically opopsite views as far as our cultures go. we get all the american sitcoms here and i laugh my guts out because they are funny but I still cannot relate to the thou shalt not love they neighbour attitude... but i guess the metros in india are slowly changing and now ppl do avoid any contact with neighbours... the old friendly give and take order is changing... hmmm.. i dont know if that is good or bad...

3:23 PM  
Blogger kittenpie said...

I knew another family in Riverdale who were close with their neighbours and the one beyond, and the three had all just built very low walls or flowerbeds with little paths through to delineate their yards. Seems nice, but awkward if you are having people over and the neighbours are out too, I think. A gate would be a nice middle ground. If you feel like you are really close, I would bring it up.

BTW - where in Riverdale are you?
I grew up in riverdale and Playter, returned to South Riverdale with my first house, and am now just north of the Danforth .

4:02 PM  
Blogger bubandpie said...

I can't believe you had the guts to ask out the Boy Next Door! What if he said no? You would've had to move - or else hide out in your house anytime he was out in the yard. Then again, maybe I just handle rejection really badly...

4:09 PM  
Blogger penelopeto said...

hmm... tricky. the family that used to live in our house were great friends with the family who's yard backs on to ours. to make it easier for the kids to go back and forth, they each removed 2 slats of fence, reattaching w/velcro for easy in/out access. well, we've never become that friendly with them (despite their efforts - i was pregnant and not feeling that friendly and it just never really went anywhere), and now, under cover of night, c. had to nail the slats back in place. i think that there might be a reason the saying goes, 'good fences make good neighbours'. you never know.

5:00 PM  
Blogger crazymumma said...

I have such a great pic of you and cakes fronm the wedding...I will get your # from The Bride and then get your address.

I am a cynical old bitch so forgive me in advance pleeeeese. I think you MIGHT be in the honeymoon faze with your neighbours. And as penelopeandbumblebee said: Fences make good neighbours.....
Gates between the two sides...I don't know....Go with your gut.


6:36 PM  
Blogger Mommy off the Record said...

I say put the gate there. If you really like your neighbors, then having a gate would be really nice. If new neighbors move in and you don't like them, you can always put a lock on the gate.

I wish we had that kind of friendly mentality in CA, but I've never heard of anyone installing a gate--at least not where I live.

1:19 AM  
Blogger metro mama said...

kittenpie: I am more accurately the film district (Riverdale is more identifiable). We're south of Queen.

bubandpie: I didn't really stop and think, I just did it. It turns out he is quite shy. He'd been watching me too but said it would have taken him forever to ask me out!

ac: thanks! I didn't get hardly any pics. I do have one of you, I'll get it to you.

8:06 AM  
Blogger sunshine scribe said...

Having such great neighbours sounds wonderful.

While I love my neighbourhood (Cabbagetown), the neighbour I share a fence with is a wacko. I'd rather reinforce it with steel rather than make a gate!!

I say, ask them ... it sounds great!

11:54 PM  
Blogger ninepounddictator said...

This is such an easy one!!!

Blame the baby! That's what they're there for! All you have to say is that you know when she starts crawling and walking around you don't want to disturb them! (Plus you think it will be SAFER for the baby - right?????)

Tell them what you have planned, ask if it's OK with them, and that's that!

I don't like meeting neighbours. No, that's a lie. I like meeting them and keeping the relationship strictly on a, "Hi How are you today? Your lawn looks great!" relationship...

11:58 PM  

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