Being neighborly

Our senior citizen neighbors (no, not those senior citizen neighbors, the other ones – the ones we met just last summer after living next door for nearly two years) called for help shoveling the driveway and sidewalk yesterday. John helped the last time it snowed, in December, I think, but since there’s no such thing as a snow day anymore, work does not go on hold when the weather gets bad, and it’s hard to squeeze in shoveling at home AND shoveling for the neighbors. Luckily, it hasn’t snowed much this winter.

So the other day, David left a voicemail for John, requesting help. First, he shouldn’t have to call – we’ll be better about that. It’s not like we didn’t see the snow. Second, David is trying to find college students or someone to help him out, but he’s striking out. Third, that day was not a good day for John to walk away from work for a couple of hours. He could keep half an eye on Jack, though, so we brought some toys and the tablet upstairs, and I went to shovel some snow.

I don’t think shoveling is fun, and I don’t want to have to do it every day, but it felt pretty good to be out there. It was hard (the overnight rain had packed the snow down so it was heavy and slushy), but it was good exercise. We started in his driveway, and by the time we reached the sidewalk in front of his house, I was so warm I took off my coat. We cleared his entire driveway, including the snow-plow slush at the street, and then cleared his entire sidewalk, all in about an hour. David was out there with me, so it was nice to catch up with him, and it felt good to be helping him out.

And then he tried to pay me! I refused, of course, but accepted the present he had for Jack. I can’t remember if I’ve said this before, but David spent his entire career designing and building toys, and he has the neatest stuff. His present to Jack was the most recent version of toddler power tools, the first versions of which were his idea and his design. How cool is that?

He’s an interesting guy, and I’m looking forward to nicer weather so we can hang out in the yard and talk.


  1. The Butcher

    This is really sweet of you. I’d help out my elderly neighbor except that he’s about 30 times more active than me and already has his stuff done before I could even offer. Amazing about his career. That is super cool.

  2. Momma

    What good neighbors you are! And how wonderful that David knows you guys well enough to know that you’re the ones to call and not feel bad about it. I’m also jealous that we’re not the elderly neighbors to call and shovel our driveway!

    Wonderful mitzvah, sweetie. You experienced the glow of doing something good just for the sake of doing something good.

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