I think I mentioned that we’re moving. This will be the fourth move in as many years. The first was moving into an apartment, as I adjuncted and R struggled to find a job. Then we downsized into a smaller 2-bedroom, and the third was here, to take the job at the university. We had about three seconds to find a place, and (probably unwisely) ended up renting an old house near the university off of Craigslist.
A year and fifty-six police visits later, we’re ready to move on.
Don’t misunderstand- the visits were not to our house- except for that little incident when someone broke into my car. No, these visits were courtesy of the neighbors on the corner (the ones with the cockroach/bedbug infestation, who left their couch and mattresses out on the curb for a month). The visits were also courtesy of the registered sex offender across the street, whose girlfriend with the “I’m a bloodsucking b*#ch” sticker on her car was highly, and vocally, offended (at 3 am) that he would break up with her- on the sidewalk outside our house. These disturbances are happening more and more frequently, and we are constantly left with a bad taste in our mouths.
Urban living at its finest, people.
So we’re moving into a historical neighborhood about three miles from our current home. “Historical neighborhood” is code for “The House Next To You Is Boarded Up” and “The Guy That Lives Behind You Drives A Prius”. In historical neighborhoods, you have this strange mix of people who are really into old houses and renovation, with a dash of completely abandoned properties, and a soupçon of low-income families. Most of those who are into renovation have urban jobs that leave them plenty of time and money to buy up old places and stick placards on them that say “Built in 1880”, while simultaneously composting and engaging in green projects.
The reasons we’ve chosen this neighborhood are many, but they center around a sense of community that we have been lacking in our current home. There are seven families in a two-block radius that we already know. There’s a community garden a block away, growing kale and corn and radishes and things. St. A’s piano teacher, a young composting newlywed, lives two blocks away. And the cloth-diapering mama who inspired me to try it out lives five houses down, with two kids the same ages as ours.
It’s a nice soup. Different kinds of people, diversity of interests and beliefs, and still close to my university and St. A’s school. We’re hoping to add a little flavor to the mix come August. Another move, another stir, another slow boil.