When the Girl Across the Street Knocked on Our Door

We’re still new to this city living stuff. Five months in and our truck was hit-and-run, my bike was stolen, and someone decided to permanently borrow the hitch off of my dad’s Jeep.

These things will happen. I haven’t taken it personally.

* * * * *

The kids were in bed and Maile and I had just settled down for a few episodes of The Office when there was a knock at the door. Maile went into the kitchen to get some snacks and I walked to the door. It was one of our neighbors, Melinda. She’s a grandmother, and I don’t think she’s older than me.

“Your wife home?” she asked.

“Come on in,” I said, and I pointed into the dining room. “Mai’s in there.”

“Thank you,” she said.

It’s a vulnerable feeling, letting a relative stranger into your house in the city. At least it felt that way for this country boy. But we’d spoken with Melinda a few times, and Maile had had some heart to heart talks with her over in front of her apartment, where she often sat on her small chair for most of the day, watching the traffic go by.

There’s this thing about living in the city. You can close your blinds and slip in and out. Or you can sit on your porch, talk to folks that walk by, help a neighbor out from time to time, even if it means buying her daughter some diapers and formula, or loaning her some money that she pays back when her assistance checks arrive.

There’s this thing about life. You can live for yourself, batten down the hatches. Or you can open your eyes and look around. Answer the door.

If you’re interested in checking out the Kickstarter for my novel, The Day the Angels Fell, you can find that HERE.