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Sporadically Sara: Neighbors

By Staff | Jul 15, 2016

No matter where you live in the world, you have at least one neighbor, whether they are close or far away. Last night I was watching a show on TV about some horrific neighbor stories and how bad things can get between people living next to one another. I have never had this kind of experience but I have had a few strange neighbors in my day. Growing up in rural Rugby, we had the BEST neighbors anyone could possibly ask for. In the country, a neighbor isn’t a few feet away from your house, but more like a few miles. Our neighbors are not only people we live next to, some of them are more like family than friends and neighbors. Our parents are all friends and all of the children grew up together and became great friends. We all depend on each other to this day for small and big things; there isn’t anything I wouldn’t do for any and all of them. Our neighbors have stuck by each other in the good and the bad times. I could never thank all of our neighbors in Rugby for all that they have done for us over the years. My gratitude is unending for all of you.

When I left Rugby and moved into this big world on my own, I soon discovered that not all neighbors are as good as the ones I had grown up with. I lived in an apartment in Grand Forks for about eight years and I had a very “different” neighbor in our building. After I had lived in my apartment for about two years, this particular neighbor accused me of having a cat in my place. I told him that I have never had a cat in this apartment and he said that he sees it all the time and it sits in the window during the day. I simply told him that if there is a cat living in my place I didn’t know about it and I certainly haven’t been feeding it so it would be extremely hungry after about two years. No matter what I told him he wouldn’t accept the fact that I didn’t have a cat nor did I ever have a cat in that apartment. I had a really hard time holding back laughter in these conversations with my neighbor about the “cat.” He was adamant that I had a cat and that I wasn’t supposed to have. One day, I finally got a little upset with him and told him to come on into my place to see if there was a cat living there. He then backed down and let it go but I am pretty sure that until the day I moved out he thought I had a cat living there. It was always fun to joke about this imaginary cat that lived in my apartment and how great it was that you never had to feed him or anything.

Last year, Tyler and I bought our dream house and hopefully the house that we will grow old in. We love our house and are always doing things to make it our own. Living in town is very different from living out in the country. In town, your neighbors are usually only a matter of feet away from you and your property. Tyler and I got so lucky when we bought this house because we have amazing neighbors! Our neighbors are wonderful people and are always willing to help us out. We have already been through some stressful times together as neighbors when my father-in-law had his heart attack in our driveway last summer. They jumped in to help us right away and took care of our yard while we took care of my father-in-law. Early this summer, we had a tree fall down in our yard and onto their tree and broke their fence. We bought a chainsaw and got to work. We spent about two days cutting trees and limbs in our yard and theirs. Since our neighbor is handier than we are, he fixed his fence with no problems. We both were happy to have worked together on fixing the fence and getting rid of a few trees we didn’t need. The help was much appreciated and glad that neither of us had to file an insurance claim for the damage. Anytime we need something, they have been right there to help us out. It has been an amazing year so far in our house with our great neighbors. We do. however. have a neighbor that is kiddy corner to us that is upset about some leaves that are blowing off of one of our trees into her yard. I am not exactly sure how that will work out but we are so thankful for the Zammerts next door. Thank you!

We look forward to many years of being neighbors and hopefully we can return all of the favors someday! Whether it is a cup of sugar or borrowing a tiller, they have been there for us since day one! There was one nice thing about the fence in the back yard being brokenwe would get to visit with them more often. Otherwise the fence is a six foot tall privacy fence and we can’t see each other when we are in our own backyards. We were thinking maybe we could cut out a space for a window in the fence so we could visit without having to yell over the fence.

Having great neighbors is such a blessing and we are excited that we got very lucky when we bought the house we did! I know people that live just down the street from us that have lived in their home for over twenty years and still don’t know their neighbors! That seems crazy to me since I grew up in such a different way. Neighbors are family in book, sometimes you might disagree with them but they are family and you will always be there for them.

Davis (formerly Carlson) is the daughter of late Tribune editor/publisher Mark Carlson.

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