Monday, February 28, 2011

Oh My, Another Monday...Already???

You must train your intuition — you must trust the small voice inside you which tells you exactly what to say, what to decide.-- Ingrid Bergman

Monday again, and a pretty rainy day to boot, that kind of day where I sit here wishing I was home.   I don't think I mentioned that I played hooky on Friday.  I climbed out of bed, and my body was aching  all over,  so I called in.  Our body's tell us when we need to rest them, and it is up to us to listen.  Gone is the time when I could go for months on end without a day off, but age is  creeping up, and the older I get, the more time I need to refresh my body.  Besides, it was one of those nasty days, one of those cool, nasty wet days that make it so much fun to just lie back and pull the covers over our heads. 

I do believe that everything happens for a reason.  We all have that little voice buried deep inside our heads that give us little hints about surroundings, situations, people...and I have learned that it is foolish not to trust what that voice has to say.   For example, while it is true that Friday was a nasty day,  it was actually not so bad at rush hour in the morning; I really could  have made it to work without getting all wet.  It was only during the afternoon that the winds really picked up, and the rain came down in torrents, but I was indoors, and even when I did have to go out, getting wet on the way home from work has never bothered me.   So, what was it really that made me stay home from work?

It was mid-afternoon,  and I was lying on the sofa reading my Kindle when suddenly I heard the sound of running water.  When I went into the kitchen to investigate, boy, was I in for a shock; it was  like a water main had broken outside on my back porch.  Water was gushing in  through the crack at the bottom the door, flooding my kitchen.  As it turns out, the heavy winds had broken off the side portion of my neighbor's cloth awning, and it blown over on my back porch.  The upper part of the awning which was closed, had been catching the rain all day.  A sudden microburst erupted quickly filling it to the top and then funneling it down the broken part which had become like a hose pushing all that water right into my kitchen.  Oh, what a mess!  And my neighbors were all at work, so I was pretty much up a creek (no pun intended)  By now we had gale force winds and the torn part of the awning was almost impossible to divert.  Eventually I did manage to get it turned away, but by this time, I was drenched from head to toe.   I shudder to think what would have happened had I not have been home.  But, that is not the end of my story.

I have lived on this block since 1998 and in all that time, I have never had a run-in with any of my neighbors.  That's just the way I prefer  to live.  I am not a confrontational person, and besides, the things I could complain about if I chose to are so petty and unimportant.  For example,  I have never once complained about how uncomfortable I feel when I step out on my back porch and am treated like a creature who just stepped out of a space ship.  It is just so terribly uncomfortable to have a line up of children, noses pressed against the fence, staring at your every move.  I could complain, yes, but they are children and are not harming me or my property in any way.  Why start something over nothing?  


You can get farther with a friendly word than with a club.-- Ukrainian Proverb

I am, in fact, what one would call a  perfect neighbor.  Perhaps I am too soft and easy-going at times,  but altercations always leave a tight feeling in my stomach.  Hence, I was not prepared for the response I got when I told my neighbor nicely about what had occurred, and asked if they could please open up the awning before our next heavy rainstorm on Monday so that the water won't accumulate there again.  In essence, the response I received, was  a rather pleasant refusal because the awning is old and we are afraid that if if is open, it just might rip more before we can have it repaired.  I then replied that something had to be done because I couldn't have my kitchen flooded again.  She replied rather condescendingly, "Well, perhaps you should do something to repair the crack of the door so the water doesn't come in." 

Now, wait a minute here.  There is definitely something wrong with this picture.  It wasn't the crack in the bottom of the door that caused the flood.  It was her awning, so, why am I the one who has to do the repairs?  Sorry, but this pushed me to my limit.  I wasn't asking her for anything.  All I wanted was a little peace of mind while I am here at work today, but once I saw that I wasn't going to get it, I not so nicely gathered up my ruined rug and asked what she was going to do about it.   Her eyes widened as she saw the damage that had been wrought, and suddenly, her whole mood seemed to change.  Before I knew what was happening, she called her son out and asked him to please open the awning.  I must say, it was hard for me to suppress a chuckle as the rest of the water that had settled there fell onto her head.  Later, she totally surprised me when she delivered a brand new rug.  

Perhaps I am too easy going; perhaps not, but I cannot complain about how this all worked out. By keeping my cool, the matter was worked out, and as neighbors, we will still be able to say a courteous hello to each other as we proceed in our separate directions. There are many ways to deal with social conflicts, with some being remarkable and even resolving the conflict at hand, and others that tend to fuel the fire or just make matters worse. 

A friendly chat with your neighbor about the problem may be the best solution. Nothing is as effective long-term as a frank talk with the neighbor.-Jim Johnson


  1. Good thing you were home! Glad it all turned out okay, even if you did have to put your foot down.

  2. You handled it all very well.:0)
    Afraid I'd have been a babbling idiot in trying to explain the experience I had been through and what might have been if I had gone to work. sigh!

  3. So sorry you had to go through this Mary, but very happy all turned out well. Having patience really is a virtue isn't it?

    Sending you my love...

  4. So glad you listened to your inner voice and stayed home! I know you are pretty much 'done' with city living and close neighbours. Good for you for addressing the problem and not giving up!

  5. Calm cool and collected, three things I am often not. Great lessons to be learned here Mary, as usual, perhaps I could start with babysteps?

  6. I think you handled yourself really well.

    Glad it was able to be resolved.



  7. no anger from you actually helped her turnaround. well done!
    and yes, listening to our bodies is important.. we need to nurture them as we get older.

  8. You stayed home, to divert worse flooding into your house. Isn't that how you see it?

    Good for you, that you got the matter handled, in a quiet way. Wonderful, that you could do it, that way.

  9. holly cow...glad it all turned out in the end