Who are the people in your neighborhood?

It'll be 14 years on Memorial Day that we drove into our neighborhood to look at a house we saw in the newspaper. 

We thought we'd only be here three years on military orders, but as military orders go, three more years got tacked on, then another two before retirement. And here we remain.

So now I've lived in our current home longer than I've lived in any other in my entire life. I've seen people come and go, children grow up, go to college, get married and move away and bring babies back home to visit. I've also seen ambulances take away older neighbors who never came back. 

It's been interesting to watch the neighborhood grow up, and grow older. I'm very attached, even though I'm not nearly the curbside socialite that my husband is. 

As I tried to write something new for the prompt this week, a previously written story came to mind. The original story "A Cause for Sociability" shares a lesson.

In this snippet, you'll read why "the favorite thing about my neighborhood is" the people. 

These are the people in my neighborhood...

From 2011

Last week after Hurricane Irene, everyone was outside cleaning up debris and pitching in with other yards. One of the gray haired retirees had a huge tree to cut up and lots of debris to take to the landfill.

I watched as the men in the neighborhood walked over with their tools (my husband included). As I watched from the window (to the tune of how many men does it take to screw in a light bulb?) I thought the same about cutting up the tree. My husband came in to get some Gatorade. While looking exhausted he also had a twinkle in his eye. Despite the cause, they were having a good time.

As my eggs and butter cooled to room temperature in the refrigerator, I would bake something if the power came back on in time. It didn’t. A few days later when I went grocery shopping to restock, I replenished my dessert baking supply. I even replaced my flour. The house got hot enough that I imagined something could have hatched and would fly out of the flour bag. Yes, that happened once.

My parents came to visit for the long weekend so I had an excuse to bake. The gray haired retirees’ wife was outside still cleaning up from the hurricane when I took her a few of the cupcakes. She surprised me and gave me a big hug. I grimaced a little. She was sweaty, but I hugged her back.

She was so grateful for everyone that had pitched in with the tree and the cupcakes were either “the icing on the cake” or the “last straw” for her emotions. She wanted to do something for us and here I was bringing them cupcakes. I explained that it was “just because”; someone always benefits from my baking spree and she just happened to be the one.

The next day my husband was outside on the grill and he came in with a card from the gray haired retiree and his wife. It was a VERY sweet card that read:

You are a gift to others… Some have a gift for helping others to see the world as a place of possibility… Some impart wisdom or comfort and care. Some point out the path, and some take you there. Some warm the heart with a human touch. You have all these gifts…

Thank you so much.

In her writing it said: Thanks for sharing your time and for helping us recover from the hurricane. We truly appreciate your kindness. P.S. We all enjoyed the delicious cupcakes!!

Included in the card was a $50 gift card to Olive Garden!

This was a Finish the Sentence Friday share. It's the standard prompt for Week 1 of the Finish the Sentence Friday writing community. I'm co-hosting with Kristi Campbell of Finding Ninee and this week we are finishing the sentence, "My favorite thing about my neighborhood is..."

Join us for next week's FTSF prompt, a Listicle post, where we will share "10 things most people don't know about me".