Saturday, August 12, 2006



We love those all day road trips, those miles of country roads, but sometimes our run can be as short as three city blocks. It is our protective policy to refrain from revealing the addresses or exact locations of certain sites we visit. It's the same spirit in which those folks who have sighted rare (imaginary) animals locally do not share locations where their hallucinations occurred. So....somewhere in 2 9 4 0 1 we have taken it upon ourselves to prevent some nice friends from escaping our neighborhood.

Grumbles and groans, complaints and caterwauling from downtown Charleston resonate throughout the low country. Perhaps this bickering is not resonant with folks in the Tri-County area, but the letters to the editors on this subject are frequent. The sum of these sentiments holds that we have too many new faces coming into town and too few familiar ones remaining. Rather than joining the eviction parties which march in torch lit groups through the night, we prefer to embrace those folks we want to keep.

As seen in the photo we have pinned in their car, blocked the discharge of large items from the ground floor and occupied the moving van's moorings. We have, therefore, placed a blockade upon the house in order to retain these good folks. Actually, a blockade is an act of war so we'll just call it a quarantine. We'll let the air out of their tires, but send in food. We'd certainly like to keep them around. In reality these folks aren't moving far, the realtor is a great gal we all like and she's found other old friends who will be moving into this house.

A neighborhood is in a way like a corporation, you do everything you can to hold on to your key people. When enjoyable old friends ebb from the neighborhood it's like the brain drain from a company. With our windows painted shut and central heat and air we are more isolated, less incorporated with our neighbors. These are small impediments which should not prevent us from getting to know our neighbors better so that we will want to keep them around. It is almost better to miss friends who are leaving than to have never known who lives next door and not give a damn if they go.


Anonymous Pam said...

What a wonderful post. I have watched a trail of friends leave the area over the past several years - for Miami, Philadelphia, Raleigh, Maine, as well as for places less definable (aka heaven?) and with each one of them, I've tried the blockade approach to no avail. Although I understand why you would use the word 'quarantine' instead of blockade - I truly believe that with each of my friends, a true blockade is what I wanted to do. But yes - it was better to have had them across the street or across the tidal creek in the back, if only for a short while.

7:48 AM  
Blogger Windviel said...

Thanks for your thoughts and positive comments, Pam. The sad trend in downtown Charleston has seen folks die off or be taxed off their property. The heirs pay a whopping probate tax then Charleston County will catheterize their wallets for life.

We should have added that it's our responsibility to make people feel so welcome and integral to the neighborhood that it would take wild horses to draw them away. Neighborhood is a two way street.

1:42 PM  

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