Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Our Christmas was lovely this year. We spent the whole day together, just the two of us (well, the dog too), made our meals together, and played games and with presents together. Very happy and peaceful. We filmed some footage of the day and I put it together into a movie for youtube: Please have a look; it's about eight and a half minutes long, but stick with it to the end (the end is the best bit). This is a picture from the first snowfall as Partner just stepped in the door. I think he looks very dashing (not to mention freezing) in his hat and wool coat.

The snow has now been washed away (thank goodness) except for a few tenacious bits in the road which were particularly thick with ice. It lasted at least a week. Partner and I actually cleared away the ice from the end of our street: we live at the end of a cul-de-sac, and the circular bit of road in front of our house had ice two or three inches thick on it. Partner was bringing the dog home from walking, and he said even she was slipping on it. So he went out with his high-tech ice-clearing tool (the flat hoe) and I joined him about ten minutes later with my high-tech ice-clearing tool (the patio broom) and together we got it all up and into three piles. I think the neighbors watched guiltily from their windows. One neighbor walked past saying something pessimistic about there being no point doing it, as it'd only get icy again. I felt like saying, what, you want us to stop? But I think that was his way of saying, yes I'm a big putz because I'll walk past you clearing the road in front of my house and I won't offer to help or even thank you. Not that I expect the neighbors to be grateful.

I think the end of our street would make a great setting for a sitcom. All the neighbors are very different from each other and are almost like caricatures rather than normal people. For instance:
  • The couple next to us are probably about my parents' age, and they have very loud arguments, and do home and garden improvements regularly (often at the same time). Neither Partner nor I really understand their accents, which is frustrating when trying to eavesdrop on their disagreements.
  • On the other side of us is a single youngish man with his elderly lap dog; he works as a security guard and keeps odd hours. Our dog likes to sneak into his yard to have a poo but I don't think he knows.
  • Two doors down from us are a family who never seem to answer their door. Once a police car camped outside their house all day, and though the car was in the drive, they kept the curtains drawn and would not open the door. Neither of them have a job though I've seen the husband doing odd jobs for the security guard neighbor.
  • Next to them are an old couple who have all sorts of unsavory relatives constantly visiting, get a new/used car every year, and sell the old car to someone else on the street. I haven't seen the wife for about a year. Maybe she died.
  • Then next to them (bear in mind this is going in a circle from us, so we are now almost opposite our house) is a twenty-something couple. He works all the time, and she knows (and tells!) about everyone's secrets on the rest of the street. She's very excited about me having a baby.
  • And directly opposite us are another middle-aged couple whom I would probably not recognize if I saw them anywhere else but walking out of their front door. Still, he is a such a gloomy bugger that he would complain even about ice being cleared from the street in front of his house.

I do know most of our neighbors' names though I suspect none of them know mine. I think together we could make great, if unintentional, comedy.

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