Friday, October 24, 2008

a neighbour

october 24 2008

One of the neighbours of my past has passed away this week.

I planned to go to the funeral service, but because of the problems with my back and the consequent immobility I remembered her here.

She was a nice woman. Always ready with a kind word and some sweets.

In a way she didn't fit in our neighbourhood.
She always wanted what other people had and so she took away the joy other had when they purchased something.
Within no time she had it too.

My mother got a green coat, she bought one too.
My mother bought a new lamp in the livingroom, she wanted and got the same one.

It went on and on, until one of the women of the neighbourhood was fed up with it.
She told her that her husband had bought her two real diamond rings.
She conveniently forgot to mention they were as fake as could be.

For a long time we didn't she our neighbour.

One way or another she got the message, and she got over her addiction to copy others.

In my mind I still hear her call the neighbouring women when she was hanging the laundry outside and wanted to talk a bit over the hedge.

Those scenes I now only see in movies about the 40ties and the 50ties.

The gardens now are fully grown, and people go their own way, without expressing their need for contact so much.

She added her smile to my childhood.

I''m grateful she never ever told my mother the secrets of the evening.
My mother never found out how I got in when she closed the gardengate when she considered me to be too late.
I think she thought my father let me in the last minutes before he went to bed.

But in fact I sneeked through the garden of our neighbour, through the row of furry trees and then put my bicycle in the shed which I opened with a copied key.

I haven't seen the neighbour for over 30 years, but it´s strange to realise she isn´t in the house anymore.


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