For those of you who read this post (the rest- you need to read it first) I have a very sad update. This neighbor, who so gallantly rose to the occasion and changed his ways and melted his icy heart and became our good friend after 25 years of not speaking to me , told me the other day that he was moving- that his wife is not happy up on Red Mountain where we live and never has been for 25 years. And he began to cry- actually three different times while we talked , he cried, which is just phenomenal when I think about our wounded relationship in the last 25 years and al we COULD HAVE been enjoying. And I said, “Oh no, just when we finally got you back!”
So last night we had a going away dinner party for he and his wife and I swore to him that he was going to be invited up for saunas, to brew beer, for cook-outs. We did not have to let this neighborly friendship die, after waiting a quarter of a century for it to change. Advice for all of us- DON’T WAIT to do something- to reach out to someone we need to connect with. Decades fly by before we know it and precious time is lost forever.
Twenty years ago, we were out working our organic garden with bald baby Sierra in her little car seat. Suddenly, we were distracted from our work by the drone of a low flying plane that appeared to be spraying herbicide over the forest. A gypsy moth infestation had caused some land owners to spray poison in an attempt to control the insects’ voracious appetites.
I learned one of our neighbor’s had ordered the spray and told the pilot that he had our approval, which is mandatory since there is an over spray of many hundreds of feet.. He did not, of course. He lied about it because he knew we would not approve. When I inquired from my neighbor why he did this and told him that we did not appreciate it, he said he will do whatever he wants with his land and proceeded to not speak to me for nearly 20 years. We live pretty secluded up here on Red Mountain and it’s a little disconcerting to think we could get in trouble, or have our house burglarized or any of a bunch of things occur and not feel comfortable that our “neighbor” would be there for us. It was a creepy feeling for many years. Continue reading