Black Cat

Going not gentle into that middle age.

You know you’re in a friendly neighborhood when…

Filed under: Expat — 7 February 2009 @ 12:06 pm

…Wednesday evening, F, the 12-year-old neighbor kid from across the street calls up for help with his English homework. We discussed where the adverbs never, always and often go in the sentence (directly before the main verb), as in “I don’t always know what I’m doing” (my example, not his).

…Thursday evening, my next door neighbor calls asking for an extra pair of hands to help him wipe shit off his cat’s fur. Please. Right now if at all possible. The cat was confined in the kitchen so that she wouldn’t decide to clean herself on the sofa or the bed. R donned thick gloves to hold the uncooperative cat, I was given thinner gloves and a damp rag. Success. We soothed our nerves by chatting in the living room while the cat soothed her (clean) ruffled feathers somewhere else.

…Friday morning, I accept a postal delivery package for another neighbor who isn’t home at the time. Package handed over later that morning.

…Friday evening, the same neighbor kid from across the street rings my doorbell asking if he can hang out here until his mother gets home from work. The timing was excellent, as I had just 30 seconds before arrived home myself. Very polite kid. He played with a couple of puzzles, declined the offer of watching a DVD as he had already seen the ones we had, and was just a nice friendly guest until his mom arrived to pick him up an hour later.

This is a nice neighborhood that I live in. We help each other out.

««« §§§§§§§§§§§§§§§ »»»


  1. Jen:

    A polite, friendly 12-year-old who does his homework?

    I never should have come back to the US!

    I only hope the neighbors will be as helpful to you if/when the need arises, but it sounds like that’s part of the package.

  2. PJ:

    I long for a community such as this! Is it really that people in Germany are so much friendlier, or are you just one of those rare people whose doors are open to others? Or both?

    And, just for the record, only a TRUE FRIEND would help wash shit off a cat!


  3. blackcat:

    Most Germans are friendly, but it isn’t so easy getting to be real friends with them. The two families mentioned above, the one with the polite kid and the one with the shitty cat, are exceptions. We are indeed lucky to live near them.

    Keep in mind that the request for shit-wiping came after several years of friendship. The exchange-karma was high enough that they knew they could make this request and still remain friends. It still makes me laugh.

  4. English:

    You sound like to much of a good neighbour to me, they just don’t know when to leave you alone. I think I would retreat back a little and have a quieter life.

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a comment

Line and paragraph breaks automatic, e-mail address never displayed, HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>