I live on a cul-de-sac. Maybe that makes it easier for us to get together and talk to each other, I’m sure it does. We live in the suburbs of a moderate sized Southern city and are a diverse group including 16 houses that include blacks, whites, and Hispanics, retired seniors, middle aged, and very young- just starting out. There are 14 children aged 2 to 11, I believe, and yet several houses with only retired couples ,or young couples starting out without children. At least two houses have adult children living back at home after the recession cost them their jobs. Three have parents or grandparents living with them. We are Republicans and Democrats, we have professionals and blue collar workers, Christians and not, but we don’t seem to be as polarized as our country right now before election time. We still seem to be able to enjoy each others’ company, cooperate, and do what’s best for our community, except for the one.
Now don’t get me wrong, we let our views be known, and there are some heated debates, but perhaps because we are mostly concerned with who won the college football game (NCSU, Carolina, Maryland, or Duke, all are represented on our street! ), who is celebrating a milestone, and/or who is grieving or sick– we still get along. Well, its not utopia, we do have some problems…there’s a guy down the street who has convinced the homeowners association board that he just has friendly, not for money, poker games, when a lot of us know he plays for money, sells and serves dinner and drinks, twice a week, from 7pm to 2 or 3am. He has a gun and knows how to use it, and generally makes his living on our little street whether we want him to or not and which is strictly against the HOA rules! Thank heavens I don’t live right next door to him, and truly, I feel sorry for the ones who do, although they seem to be coping okay, one is having a hard time. Not being able to be comfortable in your own home for fear of your neighbor is very sad!
We actually have 4 of the 16 homes on our street that include an adult who majored in psychology on the college or graduate level, including one PhD. Perhaps that’s why we get along? We always kid that we should have group therapy in the street. We practically do. On any given pretty day or evening you’ll find a bunch of us standing around out front on the street, well, me in the wheelchair, just chatting and sharing, and feeling like we belong. That’s such a good place to be.