Overall, my neighborhood is about as close to Pleasantville suburbia as you can find these days. Kids actually ride their bikes on the street and folks are constantly walking their canine friends. South are my near retirement neighbors who often play jazz, classical or NPR out of their backyard workshop and to my north is an EMT/Firefighter with a wife, two sons and a golden retriever who often delights my senses with classic rock. It’s a lovely little place with happy trees.
However, in situations like this there is always that one family, and ours lives directly across the street. A couple whose children are long gone, they employee landscapers that arrive on a near daily basis, and they’re rarely seen except when entering or exiting their garage in either their Mercedes or their VW Cabriolet. To complicate matters, my house has a circular drive and all the mailboxes are on my side of the street. Their house number preceedes mine which causes all sorts of confusion for folks finding their way.
I’ve been expecting delivery of a couple of light fixtures, so when UPS appeared, asking for a signature (and bribing Folly with a doggie cookie), I gave no second thought. (Of course, I’m hopped up on cold medicine too, and she did interrupt my anxiety about a profile I’m writing for a local newspaper) I eagerly grabbed a pair of scissors and began slicing through the packing tape. Only as I was about to pull back the flaps did I notice the “adult signature required – min 21. Alcoholic beverages…” message printed on the shipping label.
It seems my snooty neighors, the only ones on the entire street who don’t smile and wave when you walk or drive by – hell, even the family whose bunny Folly killed are nice to me! – but the neighbors in the biggest house on the street (naturally) and with the most expensive cars (duh), have ordered wine from California. And it is now mistakenly sitting on the floor of my office.
Hmmmm, what to do, what to do……..