Tuesday, February 23, 2016

My Neighborhood


Rich with "Samantha" and Bob with "Heidi"
Almost every morning, before breakfast, I walk the length of my neighborhood.  

I live in a Ryan Homes development a few miles north of Lewes, Delaware.  In fact, the border between Lewes and Milton, is the road that leads into our development.

All my life I wanted to live in a nice neighborhood. In fact, you could say that acquiring a home in a nice neighborhood has been a lifetime goal of mine.  

Some people aspire to be a great success in their chosen career.  Some others aspire to get married and have a family.

Me?  My goal was just to have my own home in a nice neighborhood with nice neighbors.

Folks, it has taken me most of my life to realize this goal.  

Growing up my family lived in second floor apartments.  Apartment buildings that weren't in neighborhoods.  

Walking to school I envied what my classmates, who lived in "regular" houses, took for granted.  A porch, a first floor, a second floor, and attic, a basement and a back yard.  I never had that "luxury" until my parents built a 1,100 square foot, three (small) bedroom, one bath house on three and half acres of land in the country outside of Downingtown, Pennsylvania.  

I was 16 years old and, for the first time in my life, I had my own bedroom.  Nirvana folks, nirvana. However, my happiness was short-lived because I was a senior in high school.  After graduation I left home and joined the Army for three years.  

From that date in January 1963 my life has been a series of apartments until our first house.  A row house in Philadelphia.  We didn't have a porch or an attic or a basement but we did have a small backyard.  Progress!

Then in 1980 we bought seven acres of land near where my parents lived in Downingtown.  Four years later we built our dream house.  We finally had a porch, basement, and attic.  Only problem, where we lived wasn't too friendly to two gay men who had the chutzpah to move into and live in their straight neighborhood.  Not all the neighbors were homophobic but enough were that made periods of our twenty-five year stay uncomfortable.  In fact, at one time our next door neighbor went to the township police chief to "report" us as gay.  She truly believed that by exposing the "gaywads" who had the nerve to live next to her (we were there first by the way, she and her husband built their house years after we had built ours).  Fortunately for me the police chief knew that Bill and I were gay (his boss the township supervisor was my boss at the bank) and informed this hateful ignoramus that "They have every right to live wherever they want to" which came as a shock to this terrible woman. 

We continued to live there several years after this woman's attempt to have us arrested.  Of course she nor her family was "neighborly" to us.  The rot continued with neighbor below who told Bill once that he made her "feel uncomfortable."  

And now we come to today.  

I decided to sell our Pennsylvania home and leave Pennsylvania because of their steadily increasing their school real estate tax.  We just couldn't afford to live in Pennsylvania anymore.  And to be very frank, I wanted to spend my remaining years in a more tolerant environment.  An environment where we didn't make our neighbors "feel uncomfortable."  

This morning, returning from my morning walk in the rain I encountered two of my neighbors, Rich and Bob.  Both are conservative Republicans.  And as you know I am not.  I'm one of those PROGRESSIVES.  But you know what folks?  even being the conservative Republicans that both of these men are, Bill and I are appreciated for just what we are, two human beings who are just trying to live their life in peace and tranquility.

I don't have a whole lot of years left on this earth folks but I am so thankful that for the few years I do have left, I am in a nice neighborhood.  And with some VERY nice neighbors.

7 comments:

  1. Ron, so many of those I've known in life (now mostly departed) started out as 'liberal/progressives' but as they got older transformed into hard-line reactionaries. I'm so pleased that you haven't, nor are showing any signs of doing so. I'm determined to keep following your example.

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    1. Ray,
      While I am to one of those so-called "bleeding heart liberals" (never was and never will be), I simply cannot support today's version of the Republican Party. They are just too reactionary and cruel and against my interests of survival. If the Republicans had their way I would lose my Social Security and Medicare and be on my own. I never have been "in" so all of us out here in the Great Unwashed are on our own according the the tenants of today's Republican party. There answer is to "go to church." Sure, uh huh.
      Ron

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  2. Ron - you certainly do live in a very well kept neighbourhood. And the small towns of Lewes and Milton are quaint and friendly. And certainly will grow as more and more head for Delaware. So you've achieved a nice ideal for yourself which will only probably improve over the years. And, like you, I had a similar ambition. I wasn't so much focused on an exact neighbourhood but I certainly wanted a cool pad to live in. And I've been most fortunate for the different condos and lofts and now a home I've lived in. So congrats and keep on enjoying!!

    Pat

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    1. Pat,
      All my life my overriding goal was to live in a nice QUIET neighborhood, have nice neighbors and grow my flowers for all to see. I have achieved that goal after these many years.
      Ron

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  3. I really enjoy reading your blog !!!!!

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    1. Thank you "Tommy". It is so heartening to receive supportive comments like yours.
      Have a great day!
      Ron

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  4. you need a dog, to go on walks.

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