Tuesday, May 08, 2007

My Army brat roots are showing

Last night Petunia and I puttered around the yard after the kids went home. When Hester got hungry, we pulled a lawn chair onto the sidewalk so that I could feed the baby while Petunia planted lobelia in our front garden. As we talked in the twilight, many of our neighbors happened by. They all stopped to look at Hester.

"Look how big she's getting. Congratulations again, ladies! It's just wonderful!" said one neighbor. "Isn't she just beautiful? Look at those cheeks! She's such a gorgeous little baby," said another neighbor. Our friend and neighbor Green Thumb held Hester's hand as we grown-ups talked grubs, sunflowers, and lilac festivals for a half hour or so. A little later we caught up with the 11-month old little girl across the street. "Could Hester use this summer outfit?" her mother asked, proffering a 3-6 month purple daisy 2-piece romper.

Honestly folks, my heart just about exploded from all the kindness. The neighborliness. After a childhood on the go, I never thought that one day I'd live in a place where my neighbors know my name, my dog's name, and my daughter's name. Where people snowblow sidewalks for one another. Where folks leave big bouquets of spring flowers or bags of summer produce on each other's porches. Where the newspaper carrier brings the paper into our enclosed entryway, and where I chat with Tom the Postman at least a couple times a week. It's unbelievable, truly.

And then there's this:

A bright red baby swing hanging from the huge maple tree in our backyard. A tangible symbol of so many hopes and dreams fulfilled beyond my starriest imaginings.

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3 Comments:

Blogger Hashbrown said...

this is such a beautiful post. I love you.

4:16 PM  
Blogger Abigail said...

Reading this post has brought tears to my eyes. Very beautiful, very powerful. The power of the simplicity in these connections is so rarely appreciated and, for many people, rarely known.

It's been awhile since I've been in a space where I feel this connection with my community and my sense of place. It is heart-warming to hear of your weekend. Thank you.

8:26 AM  
Anonymous Jenny PP said...

So sweet. You poor army brat you. I always knew my neighbors growing up. Of course now that I'm in a city I hate them and don't want to know them but.... you know. You probably have a healthier outlook. ;)

Also how sweet is Miss Hester Willa in her swing? Does she love it?

8:43 AM  

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