Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Who are the people in your neighborhood?

We have always lived in shall we say COLORFUL neighborhoods. And by that I mean they were not dull.  At our first home we bought in 97  we had local bike nights where harleys would flood our street going to the bar, a gang wake one street over, someone shot in the butt in the yard across the street, walking traffic from the bars down the street . Yep I got horn swoggled a couple of times into giving bus fare, gas money, a bag of groceries. But I got used to seeing certain people and loved my neighbors. The musician who would have rehearsals and the music would come out of his home and we could sit outside and enjoy it, or the lady next door who played the mandolin and sang, the kids walking home from Horace Mann every day that we watched go from toddling along holding Moms hand to running along trailing papers in thier fists. Our neighbor Mike who after watching my husband and our friend working out together walked down to our house one evening and did martial arts and sword work with them in our front yard.

 But its not just people who make up our daily routines and neighbors, there are animals too.

When we first moved to our house we are in now I would take Conor to school and if we passed the school bus stop we would see not just the kids but a big black dog sitting out there no matter the weather. If it was raining they would all be on a houses porch, but there she was every time.  Conor calls her his "Good luck dog". One day we drove by and there was a group of big boys standing around her and she was rolling around like a puppy playing in the grass funny to see such a big dignified dog do that...

Looks good for 16 doesnt she?
This is Candy our Good Luck Dog
I always wondered what her story was so one night I saw a group of men walking down the street (while I was driving by) and she was loping along with them. I started up a coversation with a man in a ballcap.

Me: Hi is that your dog?

Him: Yep Thats Candy she's been my dog a long long time.

Me; Is she very old?

Him: Yeah she's sixteen.  I had her since she was a pup her and my boys grew up together. She's a good good dog. She don't need a leash or anything she's a good girl.

After that I heard lots of stories about Candy. How when they first got her  they had no fence and she hated being on a tether and she acted mean so they just let her off and thats when she became the neighborhood dog.  She has been the caretaker of the bus stop kids forever. Even tho her boys are all grown up she still does it. She has her routine, every morning at sun up she gets up and walks about two blocks up from her house and around the corner to the bus stop for the school where she hangs out with the high schoolers, then jr high, and finally elementary kids. Then she makes her way down the street towards her house where she visits with the neighbors a long the way who feed her some biscuits. She ambles over and sees her across the street neighbors and then finally if its a nice day she lays in the sun on the driveway for awhile.
This summer after I took her picture ( I lured her in with a dog biscuit which she gently took and then held in her mouth til I quit petting her)  she joined Conor and I on a walk and walked us all the way home, sat for a bit then turned around and headed the two blocks home.  She has seen much this Dowager of the Hood and I look forward to seeing our good luck dog daily.
Sometimes I worry she will be hit by a car we get more and more traffic on the street she crosses to go on her morning constitutional. But she would not want to be held back from her life. So I pray and I hope when she goes its peacefully laying in the sun after one last trip to the bus stop with the kids...
Thank you Candy your my favorite "neighbor".


  1. Some dogs are made to remind us that we have been chosen by God as caregivers. If people forget then its possible they never knew to begin with. Candy is a caregiver chosen by God. You don't get where Candy is today without Holy Guidance. She knows her job. I just hope that other people like Suzie will appreciate her. Most neighborhoods don't have a Candy or Suzie to take care of them, tell stories about them and give us a conscience to appreciate that animals are sometimes so much smarter and kinder than we as humans. I know Suzanne and where she lives. She is a sweet, wonderful, caring person. Lovely to know. Smart and hard working. A great mother. A caregiver.

  2. Love this one seester! You write so beautifully! I'm so proud of you!