Monday, October 16, 2006
Ripples in the Wind
Change...we often fight or resist it but sometimes change can bring us exactly what we want.
I was just visiting some blogs on blogspot and noticed some have ads placed on their page. Have to say I'm not totally surprised...it is inevitable when everyone is minding the bottom line.
Seeing those ads reminded me of the huge uproar and exodus last year when AOL first put the ads on our journals. At first I got caught up in the moment and reacted...then slept on it...next day brought a new view of things and the whole banner ads thing really didn't matter anymore to me.
That was the day I learned a convicted child rapist was living two doors down from my home.
I was chatting with the neighbor girl, A, in my front yard when our new neighbor from across the street approached us. He thought A was my daughter and asked if I knew the people two doors down. I didn't really; I knew of them and every one was trouble if you know what I mean. So with A standing right there (she's now 10) he relayed the news of the 18 year old convict living in our neighborhood. Sadly, I wasn't surprised by the news and I'll explain. The family in question was dysfunctional and many times I heard the 18 year old calling his younger brother a fag, and several other words not worth repeating; fights and yelling came from the home on a weekly basis. There was so much anger eminating from that house just the sight of the place made my skin crawl. When the family first moved in, the younger boy found Sam and I outside, so he approached us and introduced himself (I think he was about 9 or 10 at the time). I sensed he was looking for an escape...a friendly face...so I welcomed him; my husband sensed something else and cautioned me not warm up to him too much. As it turned out, the boy later became a problem for us as he and his buddies liked to have late night parties on the grounds of our tree farm, among other things.
I thanked the neighbor for telling me and when he walked away, I asked A if her mom was home; she wasn't and so I asked A to promise me that she would never stop at that house two doors down. She had to walk past it everyday on her way home from schooland I often saw theboys hanging around outside late in the afternoon. Sometimes they harassed A and her brothers as they walked past...actually the children were usually running past that house. I was worried about A's safety, but by the first of the year the 18 year old disappeared and then I learned the family would be moving...soon. They were renting the property and the owner wanted them out by spring.
The place is a dump and a major eye sore. Each time I drove and walked past the house I was filled with dread. These people trashed the house and yard. We live on a narrow street; when two cars pass each other one has to pull off to allow the other by, and often the boys would stand in the street, blocking our path while ignoring us but at the same time daring us to pass them. Wannabe gang-bangers in a small town best describes their behavior. Several times I wanted to sell our home and move, but we stayed put. Sam built this house in 1977 and he was not going to allow some punks in a rental house chase us away. So the news of their departure from our street brought a huge sense of relief to the neighborhood.
Throughout the summer the house sat empty and everyone wondered what the owner planned to do with the property. Sometimes while working in the garden or tree farm I'd see a car or two parked in front. Then a For Sale
sign was posted in the front yard, even though nothing had been done to improve or even repair the house or the yard, and I began to wonder what kind of person would even consider making an offer on the place.
Two months ago a Cat was parked in the front yard, unloaded, fired up and it looked like the entire building was about to be razed. Joy, joy, happy joy, happy, happy, joy, joy!!!!! Come to think of it, it actually felt more like a "Ding Dong The Witch Is Dead" moment. But then again the electrical and other utility service wires were still connected to the house. Hmmm, what were they up to? Half the house was demolishedand it looked like they were planning an addition. And last month construction began on the site and now a new home is taking shape. We've speculated the property is being split into two lots, with the older cottage house being renovated on one lot and a new two story constructed on the second. At any rate, it is a welcome change, and work is rapidly progressing on the new home.
I'm glad we didn't move, if we had we never would have purchased the tree farm and I wouldn't have been around to see the shady character's departure from the neighborhood. Nor would I have met A and her brothers, who always make me laugh and sometimes surprise me with little things, even if they do keep my name at the top of their school fund-raising project best customer list. ;)
Sometimes change comes in ways we don't expect, untouched by our hands, usually because of forces at work unknown to us. That's not to say we should always sit back and do nothing, but if we ride out the storm rather than jumping ship, we open our lives to the discovery of growth and renewal, thus enabling ourselves to feel the magical warmth of the sun's light when it emerges to illuminate the darkness, the sun always rises. It is the sight of that first light that often brings a sense of true freedom.
As for the 18 year old rapist, since January I've checked the law enforcement sources and he's not listed in our county. Don't know where the rest of them are but I never see them anywhere in town...and that's okay by me.
~~~ The universe is change; our life is what our thoughts make it.
~Marcus Aurelius Antoninus
Update 10/18/06: I just saw my journal on another computer and discovered I need to be more careful when using fonts that make cool icons like leaves because not all computers have that font installed and if they don't, it shows up as something else. Imagine my horror when I saw the three fall leaves displayed on my home computer now being displayed as three k's on another computer. If I offended anyone, I am so sorry; I had no intention of doing so. Lesson learned: use care when playing with icons and special characters within fonts and stick to .jpg files for images. Wish someone would have said something to me these last couple of days.~Dona