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Piece of Mind: Seeking closure from a revolving door

July 19, 2012|By Carol Cormaci

There were signs a couple of months ago that we were about to lose some next-door neighbors. The first omen was the mid-week sighting of a few racks of clothing set up in the driveway and a handful of women who appeared to be shopping with enthusiasm, chatting and bobbing their heads as they sized up the items before them.

Shortly thereafter we heard what sounded like an end-of-school-year party in their backyard that had somewhat of a “going away” air to it. We could have been imagining it, I decided then, since we do not speak or understand Korean, but I remained slightly on alert for other tip-offs that a change was pending.

One morning near the end of June a Korea Express truck was parked in front of the house, ramp down. A day later, the property had an abandoned look. The evidence was in: For what seems like the umpteenth time in the 26 years we’ve called our house home, there would be another turnover of occupants next door. Do not get me wrong: I think it’s wonderful that whoever owns the house is able to find good, solid tenants who take great care of the property. I simply lament the fact that we don’t ever seem to connect or establish friendships with any of them. It’s our fault, not theirs. We could make a better effort.

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We did have a few pleasant encounters with members of this last family in the three years they lived there — a dad, a mom and their son. The boy, a preteen when we met, spoke some English; his parents almost none. But they all had engaging smiles and waved to us when we’d pass on the street, or were in our front yards at the same time.

One time, when our oversized eugenia tree, heavy after a rainstorm, fell on their roof and took out their TV satellite dish, the adults of that household presented themselves at our front door and motioned to me to follow them to their property. We used hand gestures and a lot of nodding to get through the conversation, but it was easy enough to see we had a problem that had to be resolved. It was taken care of that day, and we were thanked profusely, I think, based on the grins and the homemade cake proffered afterward.

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