Spoiler alert! This blog is co-written with my humans though the opinions expressed, and discoveries noted are entirely my own. My humans actually have a lot of time to co-write with me, as they are now both retired. Six months! Wow. When retired, the gaze of humans shifts, from that of the workplace where home is a place of retreat, to retirement where home is host to most if not all of life. So retirees notice what I have always noticed, especially on the street where I live, and have done so for just a few days shy of two years now. So you may well ask, what happens on my street?
The house across the way is for sale. It is a large five bed/four bath home almost totally cleaned out and upgraded. The rather eccentric elder lady has I believe moved to the coast, so her family fixed up the place, which given the coming and going of trades and restoration folks over several months indicated that considerable TLC was necessary. It would be great for a large family; with I must add a young and energetic dog who like me loves to chase and be chased.
On a more contentious note school is back in, that is the overloaded secondary school whose field backs onto our garden. The school is two hundred students over capacity which means that when school is out (and it seems few students walk or ride home these days) parents or guardians wait for their charges up and down our crowded street and most importantly at the edge of our driveway. It was disconcerting for my female human to ask a woman in a car to move so we could enter our driveway only to be given the parental finger. My fatherly human considered photographing and sharing publicly licence plate numbers (he is a fine photographer for sure and could make them really look clear and good) but thought that to be unnecessarily combative.
University students are a delight, many who live here given the ten-minute walk to and from campus. I wish them well in their academic endeavours. My job is to welcome them energetically when they pass our living room window. For a small dog, I can produce quite a shrill bark. Some owners would find this distressing, even annoying when continuing for an extended period of time. My motherly human still cuddles me and shows a most affectionate love. I am less certain of my fatherly human’s feeling in the matter. Good guy, but . . .
Many delivery folks from shops as diverse as Henry’s Camera, Lee Valley Amazon and others regularly leave gifts at the door. Sometimes they are for me but most often for the lady of the house. They come, rain or shine, summer and winter, all deserving an appropriate greeting. That said, if they are male, tall and wearing dark clothing and they step into the house, things change. Intense scrutiny accompanied by high decibel interrogation must occur. Be warned.
My street does have its mystery folk, whether a lonely walker or fragile lookout. Looking out is not however a bad thing, as most of us have had nocturnal interlopers go through unlocked cars and even shoot up in a garage. We have the best neighbours we have ever had, but some are tidier than others. Five to seven cars parked on a neighbour’s front lawn sort of reminds me of the Munsters’ 1960s sitcom. The poor folks across the street must look the other way as best they can. Finally, we do have the nicest from lawn in our part of the hood, but the competition is low. And thank goodness ninety-year-old George across the street has a truck and can still drive it so we can deposit mountains are garden clippings at the refuse centre.
Other more perfunctory things occur on our street. I have gotten over my fascination with garbage and recycling collection. Trucks from the local fire station no longer paralyze me with fear; they have a job to do – Thanks as always to all first responders. We did have a bear in the carport next door, but can you believe, I was asleep at the time! We have watched the occasional teenage party down the block – my humans did call the police when kids were stopping cars trying to pass clusters of young partiers. The parents told us the next day that they were home all along – Really! Must have been watching Heartbeat for the third time on Knowledge Network. They are however interesting neighbours as they were the first people we met who actually had COVID at the start of the pandemic.
I must add that often there seems to be nothing happening on our street. To that end, I continue to bark, hoping to attract if not attention but engagement with anything or anyone who might be seeking companionship.
So you ask, and concerning music, do I have a favourite song from a favourite musical? Of course. It goes like this:
I have often walked down this street before, But the pavement always stayed beneath my feet before, All at once am I several stories high, Knowing I’m on the street where you liveMy Fair Lady
I wonder about the street where you live. Streets can be marvellous communities within communities. We know each other, but not too well if you get my drift. Physical co-location does create interesting possibilities. If I can attract some more dogs, well we shall have a street party, just like the dog park, but here, “at home” on the street where we live.