Daily Prompt: Good Fences?

Who are your neighbors? Are you friends with them, barely say hi, or avoid them altogether? Tell us a story — real or invented — about the people on the other side of your wall (or street, or farm, or… you get the point). (I’m really late in posting this, but whatever.)

This is all true.

I live in what could be considered a ghetto. It’s not too terrible, but it’s not paradise. I like it though, my street is nice and is the last good street in the neighborhood. On one side of me is an older man who has lived there his entire life. His parents built the house, he was born there, he grew up there, he now owns it. He has lived there by himself for at least my entire life. I’m 34. He’s my moms age, 59, and to be honest he looked 59 when I was a kid. I thought he was almost 80 now.

He loves birds and rabbits. Every other animal can go to hell. He kills neighborhood cats because they kill his rabbits and birds. Once he offered me a squirrel pie. He wasn’t joking, and I regret not trying it.

He’s never been married that I know of, never had any kids. His only family that I know of only comes to visit him on the holidays, sometimes. One year they came around Christmas time and only visited for a half hour. They came from halfway across the United States for that visit.

He likes to talk to the mailman, as long as it’s the regular guy. Every day the mail is delivered, he’s out there at 4 o’clock talking to the mailman. Rain or shine.

I like that he lives there. He’s nice, hardly ever bothers me, he keeps an eye on the neighbors next to him and fills me in on any suspicious activity. There hasn’t been for a while. Not since the drug lords moved out.

The drug lords had lived there for quite some time. They were fun. One time my neighbor found a used condom in his yard, next to their driveway. He later found out the woman there was prostituting herself out (the next people to move in there, the woman in that relationship was also doing the same).

My neighbor used to tell me how he’d watch this big car back into the driveway late at night. Some people would come out of the house and put big black garbage bags full of something in the trunk of the car. They’d leave. A few minutes later they’d come back with an empty trunk and do it again.

When they got busted finally, it came out they were the third largest weed dealer in Cincinnati…

70s-show-across-town-weed-punchline

… and they had a meth lab in their basement.

The couple who moved in after them in which the lady was a prostitute… they’d steal from their neighbors on the other side of them, which was 3 houses down from me. A nice, very old white couple who have lived there for centuries. The old man still gets out every day in nice weather and makes stuff out of wood. He wheels his power tools and table saws out into the driveway and makes stuff to sell. They grow tomatoes in their back yard and sell them too. The prostitute lady would sneak over there and steal tomatoes.

I don’t know much about the neighbors farther down that way, other than the guy in the first house on our street, but I’ll get to him. On the other side of me is a nicer lady, also older but probably also my moms age. She lives there alone, but she does have kids. At least one daughter that I know of. She’s just the most recent neighbor in a long line of neighbors who have lived in that house since I was a kid.

The first was an older lady my grandmother really liked. She lived there for a long time and eventually died. The next neighbor was a gay man. We don’t know if he was gay, I don’t think he was, but my grandmother was convinced. She said to me once when it was just me and her talking, and of course she had to whisper it as if he would hear us, that she noticed he had a guy friend come over to visit and he would always stay the night. We’re talking about the neighbor, a single guy living in a house. Yeah, guys never have buddies come over for a night of drinking and watching the game and the buddy ends up passing out there and leaving in the morning. That NEVER happens.

Then again the neighbor guy would come over to borrow a cup of sugar and then later come back with a pie he baked himself. So maybe he was gay. My grandmother wondered once what his sheets looked like. I don’t know why, but that always made me laugh. Other than the gay thing which is no deal to me one way or the other, he was a nice guy and never bothered us negatively.

After him was a lady who was a pain to live next to. She was always up in our business. I had to buy a new car once cause my previous one was totaled. While it was parked outside she walked out and around my car checking it out. She had kids who were my age but were almost never home. The daughter was whoring herself out and often came home in the car of some other dude and she was always trashed on something.

On the other side of that house and on up I’m not really sure about the people who live on the street. They all keep to themselves like the rest of us, which is nice.

On the opposite side of the street is a field, which is really nice for the view and the quiet. I’ve been hearing for many years how Section 8 housing was going to be moving in there, but it hasn’t happened yet and I hope it never does. Never mind the Section 8, I don’t want ANYBODY moving in the field. It’s awesome to have across the street and it’s a great place to walk the dogs.

The very end of our street dead ends into woods, but before that, just after the field is the backside of a hospital. If that wasn’t there we’d have almost no traffic on our road, but because of the hospital we always have traffic, although it is light, of employees going to the hospital or going home. The front of the hospital sits on a main road, so most people use that to go to it.

At the beginning of our street is a grocery store. There’s an entrance to it on our street, which makes it real nice when I have to go shopping. I don’t have to leave my street to do it, and the store is only 2 blocks away from my house, if that. They also have a gas station there, so that’s doubly nice.

Now for the guy in the first house on the street. He’s a registered sex offender. I found that out one day when I got a post card in the mail telling me one had moved in to my area. It also had a website for me to go to, so that I could see where the guy was moving in at. That guy was moving into a house two streets behind me. While I was on that site I discovered the guy at the end of my street. I also discovered a street near here that has an entire sex offender community. Apparently they all go to live in this particular area once they’re registered. I stay off of that street now. It was a shit hole to begin with.

Across the street from the grocery store is one of the worst Wendy’s ever. Just up from them is one of the worst car dealerships in the city, often called the “Lemon King Of Cincinnati.” Even farther down the road is another car dealership (that road is littered with used car lots, more so than any other road in the city) that has a giant Indian sign. In Cincinnati it’s famous. Many years ago when that sign was originally put up, the car dealership who it belonged to used to advertise that they were located “On Paddock and Vine at the big Indian sign!” Now, locals who have lived here for at least the last 20 years know of that saying, but not many actually remember the name of the original dealership. But, the Indian sign is famous here, more so than the dealership.

It's big.

It’s big.

Right near there used to be a big Jim Beam plant. I don’t know what they made there, but it often smelled greatly of mash around the building. I-75 drives up right past that building, so if you were traveling on it, you’d smell it. Just across from there is a big company who makes flavors for stuff, and it often smells like whatever flavor they’re making. My wife hates it. I think it smells good. And of course way down the road from us is P&G, and sometimes it smells like cake mix driving by there. Now THAT smells good.

But before all of that, just past the Lemon King, is the Hamilton County Fairgrounds. Driving past there when they’re having a fair is impossible, so I avoid it. Other than that there really isn’t much going on around here. Except that night my buddy and I got shot at just across the street from the Lemon King. Eh, it happens.

9 responses to “Daily Prompt: Good Fences?

  1. Eh, it happens…nice take on it…glad they missed! It’s good that you have someone who keeps an eye out for suspicious activity.

    • Yeah, I don’t know if they were shooting at me or someone else. But it was loud, so it was very close to us. And it was right down the street from my house, next to this building where you can rent a room for a night or a week or whatever. It’s not so much a motel, I can’t think of the name those places go by. But there is a lot of prostitution that goes on there. And it’s right next to a shitty bar, so that helps.

  2. I’ve had some whacko neighbors, some way, way, way bad drug dealers, and fortunately mostly great neighbors. I actually think the guy at the end of our street sells weed, but only in the summer? I don’t mind, except this is a quiet dead-end street, and his patrons tend to speed through here, as if there are not nine children who think its their oasis.
    Our nearest neighbors are Don & Deb, who we adore, because they’re polite, keep their yard up, and never ever bother us.
    The house next to us is abandoned. It quickly passed through the hands of three generations and the youngest went to jail due to a shooting. Murder, attempted murder, somethin. I want them to tear the house down so I can buy the lot, lol! It’s an eyesore now that the trees are barren, but in the summer, with all the hibiscus, we never really see it.
    One of the mothers down the road is either a dimwit, or is on some sort of sedatives, because she’s always glazed over. I feel that this may be because she works at a church preschool and has three boys at home.
    Other Mommy is young and suffers from some sort of status/class debacle, since every time Moo returns from her house, Other Mommy has bad-mouthed our neighborhood and schools.
    (We live on the poorer side of the richest school district here, so I dunno what her problem is, and chalk it up to the fact that she’s young.)
    My schizophrenic neighbor is very kind, but you can tell he’s unwell when he brings over a Marsh bag full of uncooked sausage balls…
    I live a short distance from the Hostess bakery. The smells are phenomenal!

  3. I avoid my neighbors if at all possible. I seem to always end up living next to idiots…

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