Everybody needs good…

When I was a young country lady-in-waiting, I was an avid Neighbours watcher. As are all the Royal Family so I’ve heard. Loyal only to Ramsey Street, I shunned all mention of that beachside township and its loose youth.  A bit grownup for me, I fully supported Al Stewart’s fist shaking and cries of “young hooligans!” Instead, every night I would sit in my jammies by the woodstove and watch as Kylie and Jason played out their endless love to the nation.

Living on a farm forty minutes from town meant that my only neighbours were a farming couple whose children were attending boarding school in Sydney which seemed a lifetime away to me. I daydreamed about being a “neighbour” and what it would be like to live in a cul-de-sac, my greatest wish. I imagined children my own age running in and out of each other’s houses, sharing their pool and staying overnight with mum and dad just next door as I suffered dreadfully from homesickness, and do still, even now.

I had forgotten all about those days until recently when I was thinking about how truly lucky I have been over the years with the people who have played out their lives in the streets I call home. More important to me than the car I drive, the jewellery I wear, are these friends that I cherish.

My first ever best-neighbour, Lady Carkayjis, a true blue blood, taught me what it was to depend on someone for more than just a cup of sugar. I still have every note the lass used to slip under my door offering solace, calm advice, kindness and always love. She has gone on to her own life with her dear little family and new neighbours that I have no doubt are enjoying her brownies and endless cups of tea right now.

Since then I have made every effort to know and befriend anyone I can on our street. My theory is that if you don’t extend the hand of friendship within the first two weeks, it becomes awkward. And so, no matter how exhausted, dusty and bruised I am from moving house (and I’ve done it a lot, there are raffies who feel sorry for me), I make a small gesture to say Hi! At Rainbow Lane it was bunches of mint tied with ribbon and a note hastily thrust into letterboxes at midnight after emptying boxes  all day. It was enough. In return we received immediate dinner invitations, offers of emergency babysitting, wine left on our doorstep and more importantly a five minute smile and chat here and there amongst the errands of the day. Friendships kindle slowly and surely as trust grows and blessings are shared amongst all of us on the street.

This is my garden. I take on the role of caretaker easily and with much duty. To create a bubble of harmony around my family and watch the Littles grow beneath the shelter of love. Music to my ears is the sound of bathtime all around the street on an evening so mild the doors are open, glasses clinking at impromptu drinks out the front where we keep a table in readiness.  Everybody needs this, just a little peace and understanding and if you are really lucky you might find the perfect friend.

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2 Comments

  1. Bev

     /  March 2, 2012

    You are truly one of the kindest and most thoughtful people I have ever met …I would be so happy if you were my neighbour. xxxx

    Reply
  2. Lady Moss

     /  March 2, 2012

    Ahh ditto Bevilicious. Being neighbours would be the awesomest! We could be like Bestie and Sis! X

    Reply

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