Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Adventures in Moving: Part 4

Let me start off by saying I am type-A all the way.  A strong type-A at that.  I like lists, schedules and rules.  I like order.  So let's just say this this moving process has been anything but orderly in the eyes of a type-A control freak.  Nothing in particular, it's just challenging for me to have my entire life in upheaval.

It's getting better each day though.  The Pilot was home over the weekend and we go A LOT done.  We are getting to the point where the new house is really starting to feel like OUR home and not just a house will all of our stuff in it.

One reason it feels like home?  The Disney-tourist Potato Heads have been unpacked.

Even the cats are feeling at home.  As long as The Animal Whisperer Pilot is home, they are happy. When he's gone, those furballs pout and only come smearing around me when they are hungry or so desperate for attention that they will take whatever they can get.

One of the challenges we are having now is meeting the neighbors.  I think it's really important to be friendly with your neighbors.  I'm not expecting to be BFFs with all of them, but I'd really like to get to know them all.  To say we didn't have the best neighbors at the condo is the understatement of the year.  Besides, I grew up in a neighborhood where everyone knew each other and good or bad, everyone knew each others' business.  People looked out for each other.  My parents still live in that neighborhood and are close with several neighbors.  They really are extensions of our own families.  We have vacationed together.  Now as the "kids" are growing up, we are all attending each others' weddings.  Lots of fun!  I want that same experience now that I am a "grown up."  If we decide to start a family, I want that experience for our offspring.

So here we are the new kids on the block (yes, I grew up in the 90s) and really wanting to meet the neighbors.  Whatever happened to the Welcome Wagon and bringing over a casserole to meet the new people??  We've lived here over a month now and the only interaction I've had has been forced and I've been the one to stick my neck out.  I'll go ahead and fess up that I am terrible when it comes to introducing myself to new people.  If someone else introduces me to a stranger, I'm ok.  I'd like to think I'm not completely socially awkward,  But if I have to be the one to initiate, I turn into my 8-year-old formerly shy self.

It's hard to make myself available because there is so much work to be done on the inside of the house.  I hate to hole myself up inside but that's where the boxes are calling out to me that they need unpacked.  I've forced myself to go outside to water our hanging flower baskets and then I'll linger like a creeper out front or in the garage.  Just hoping maybe someone will be outside and I can say hello.

Another dilemma is that I am terrible with names.  I've now met three adults, two kids and a dog.  Is it strange that the only name I can actually recall is that of the dog?  Sigh.  None of these encounters have happened in the presence of The Pilot so I'm totally dependent on my own recall, which obviously sucks.  At least I can say hello to Charlie the dog when I see him.

We do have one slight advantage.  The previous owners of our house left us a letter which their realtor gave me at closing (the previous owners didn't attend the closing).  It was a very sweet hand written letter telling us that it was such a great house for them and how they brought home their youngest son from the hospital there and how their older son learned to ride a bike in the driveway.  It was very thoughtful.  They also described some of the neighbors they were friendly with.  They included names!  So even if we haven't met those people, we do know their names.  I've made it my mission to figure out how to meet the neighbors directly across the street.  According to the letter, they are newlyweds also and don't have any kids.  We must meet them because everyone else seems to have a bunch of kids so at least we would have that in common.

Tonight was absolutely beautiful.  It's been so hot around here that it was nice to not be sweating like a banshee after being outside for 10 seconds.  After taking the trash out (and wondering why it is that The Pilot has been working every single trash night since we've moved into the new house), I decided I'd go on a short bike ride through the neighborhood..... and smile to anyone and everyone I passed so they would think I am a nice person and they should come talk to me....or wonder what is wrong with me and call the block watch captain.

I hopped on my bike and here's what I discovered:
  • Just like at the condo, we have some expert trash pickers here in the new neighborhood.
  • It is .1 mi from our house to the neighborhood playground and picnic shelter.  
  • It is 1.1 mi from our house to the nearby elementary school and playground.
  • The path that winds around the perimeter of our neighborhood isn't so great for bikes.  The tree roots have pushed up the blacktop and it's bumpy!
  • I wish it wasn't creepy for a 31 year old woman to go swing by herself.  I really need to go borrow my niece and nephew so I have an excuse to go to the playground.
  • Some of the neighbors don't make their kids wear bike helmets.  And yes, I judge them.  I'm sure they are nice people and I still want to meet them, but I also have a strong urge to give them some literature on how bike helmets save lives.  Stepping off soap box.
  •  I need to find out exactly where my friend lives because I rode down his street and probably looked really strange as I rode by reeaaaally slowly and stared at all the people in their yards trying to see if any of them were my friend.  (Hey Andy, send me an email!)  :)
  • I rode by the house we originally made an offer on but ultimately lost and decided I am really glad that we have the house that we have.  
  • That just 20 minutes prior to my ride, I was admiring our weekend project of finally getting some bike racks for the garage so we can actually park in the garage now.
The Pilot still needs to mount a rack for his mountain bike but our road bikes are up off the floor now!  It's like a work of art.  It only took an hour, several tries, some new home-owner drama, a lost screwdriver bit, a call to my dad for help and me covered in mosquito bites from trying to "supervise" but they are up on the wall!

Anyways, on my way back to our house, I passed by a house several doors down and realized The Pilot and I are amateurs when it comes to our bikes and bike racks.  If my eyes weren't tricking me as I road by, this garage had at least 5 road bikes hanging from the side wall.  I'm talking professional looking racks and bikes.  We must meet these people!  If only I wasn't so socially awkward.


  1. You're making a lot of progress on getting settled in! How thoughtful of the previous owners to leave you that letter. We've been in our house for 3 years and only know 2 sets of neighbors. I think you sound pretty fearless tyring to meet everyone.

    I'm terrible with names as well. It's like I totally blank out when somebodyintroduces themselves. I'm glad to hear it's not just me or I'd be paranoid about early onset memory loss.

  2. I wish we were neighbors! We are not in the same stage of life as any of our neighbors and are the youngest in our immediate area of the hood. We know our neighbors, but don't really hang out with them. I wish we had more young couples near us to hang out with. When we lived in Virginia we had a couple sets of neighbors that were awesome and we would be over at each other's houses hanging out and drinking beer with them all the time. I miss that. Maybe when we have kids it will change. For the time being, I think most people in my neighborhood know me because of my regular walks with Clyde :)