While visiting the beach, my husband and I have been doing some house hunting for an eventual place to move to once we retire. There were two, small homes, about nine miles from the shore, that we’d viewed online that piqued our interest. So, yesterday evening, we decided to take a look at them. The first was a lovely little place, but was in a very crowded neighborhood with hardly a few feet between houses; lack of parking was also an issue that didn’t bode well with my civil engineer hubby! However, the second, newly built home, with a small, well-landscaped yard, seemed absolutely perfect for us. We parked out front, and as I readied my camera to get a few shots to show our kids, the neighbor, who knew the builder, offered us the keys so we could check out the inside.
The interior had all of our requirements; hardwood floors, a fireplace, 3 bedrooms , 3 baths, gorgeous kitchen cabinets with gleaming granite counters, and a cute little loft upstairs that would make a perfect nook for a comfy sectional and TV.
I was already imagining shopping for beachy furniture and décor as we walked
over to the neighbor’s to return the key. Our future neighbor was eager to answer any questions that we had about the house and the area. We asked all of the usual queries about association fees, yard service, and hurricanes. All were met with very positive answers. Things were looking up until our potential next door neighbor–the one we’d unavoidably see each day and potentially barbeque with–began to let us know a little too much about himself. I mean WAY too much! Over the course of what felt like hours, as my husband and I slowly edged
closer and closer to our car, he held us in his non-stop, jabbering grip. He managed to bring up every subject that my mother, and etiquette teacher, had told me never to mention in polite, civil conversation. I learned about his overly-zealous religious views and his heavily right wing political leanings, rife with conspiracy theories. He ever so sincerely, with a goofy-assed smile on his face, shared his desire to keep the neighborhood lily white, and assured us that only good white Americans had built the home we were looking at. He also managed to mention in a whisper that there was one home that a “funny” couple lived in, but they were, thankfully, moving.
In no time, I noticed that the homes on either side of him were empty, and that
even the neighbor across the street had a big “For Sale” sign in the front of her yard. Just as his enormous dog squatted to take the dump of the century on our potential yard, he finished his spiel about the idiocy of leash laws, he reopened his gaping pie-hole and asked us, “Whataya think? Are we going to be neighbors?”
By this time we’d reached our car. I felt the sun-warmed chrome of freedom as my hand quickly gripped the door handle. “I think we’re looking for a place with more diversity,” I said as whisked myself into my seat. “Where’s that “funny” couple moving to?” asked my husband as he pushed the ignition button and hit the gas.