Last week, I looked forward to the outdoor music/art festivals that were held downtown over the weekend. Check! I went, I ate greasy fried things, I listened to music, the weather was gorgeous (if bordering on a bit too warm) and I bought a delightful little bird pin that looks something like this (only even cuter, because its little legs are wearing black-and-white striped stockings and ruby slippers, a la wicked witches everywhere, and there is no college sports team aspect to it):
Isn't that adorable? Check out JustPlainJane for other little bits of fun.
This week I was planning to look forward to receiving a pair of diamond earrings I purchased on "e to the bay" from a woman named Phyllis in Atlanta for a red-hot bargain price.. (Do you know her, Sauntering Soul? Don't you hate it when people ask questions like that, as if the fact that two people live in the same city, despite the size of the city involved, must mean that they are acquainted? And don't you hate it when someone asks that and you really DO know the person, and you have to get off your high horse with the 'tude and be all "hey--small world"? I digress.) But I can no longer look forward to that because they came in the mail today. (And I only bought them on Thursday!) Here they are--aren't they sparkly?
So now I'm going to look forward to getting my "Nensa" membership card in the mail, which should happen in 5-10 business days, if the email I received, confirming the receipt of my test results, is any indication. (That and the fact that they have already debited my bank account for the membership fee.) Then I can carry it around and wave it in the faces of those who dare to challenge me. I wish "Nensa" had enough of a sense of humor to have the card proclaim "Certified Smartypants," but I'm sure that's not the case. (BTW, I think you should all become "Nensa" members as well, and we can call ourselves "smartypants bloggers," instead of "mommy bloggers" or "personal bloggers." Hee.)
I'm also looking forward to the 50th birthday party of one of my guitar-playing friends this weekend. There is going to be an actual stage set up in the backyard, and lots and lots of picking and grinning. And eating. And drinking. Should be mucho fun! (And perhaps an opportunity to play the "smartypants" card? Hmm....hee.)
So...those are my "looking forward to" items for this week.
What else is going on in my little world? Not a whole lot, truthfully. The sciatica continues to improve, but damn--I'm all tight and twisted! I've tried to do yoga a couple of times, and I'm feeling pain in muscles I never felt pain in before. No fun.
You know what else is no fun? My newish next-door neighbors--you know, the ones with the playground in their backyard. Really, I'm all for kids having a good time, but they're out of control. It's like living next door to a carnival. Think I'm exaggerating? Here's what they've got out there:
- 2, yes TWO full-sized metal swingsets with slides
- baby-sized covered swing
- one see-saw
- one jungle gym
- one merry-go-round
- 2 of those cube-shaped castle-y things with different-shaped holes and a slide
- turtle-shaped sandbox with cover
- portable basketball hoop
- child-sized picnic table
- adult-sized wrought-iron table with umbrella and chairs
- barbeque grill
- about a dozen identical large plastic balls
- trikes, trucks, wagons and assorted things you push around
All this for two small toddlers who I almost never see outside. Is it just me, or does this seem excessive? Am I just out-of-touch with the entertainment needs of today's kids? When I was a kid, we had a swingset, period. (Well, a swingset, and trees, and a creek, and the whole OUTDOORS.) Was I just deprived as a child, and therefore now a cranky old thing?
You know what really bothers me, though? Not the kids--like I said, they're hardly ever outside, and they're cute, and their mom seems sweet (if horrifyingly young to me). It's their father's seemingly endless supply of late teens/early twenties slacker dude friends. Seriously, EVERY DAY there are at least 2-3 (not necessarily the same ones each time) guys just hanging out on their porch and in the backyard, smoking and drinking, making themselves at home on the playground equipment while the tenants themselves are not home.
And maybe I am a cranky old thing, but that bothers me. They just come over and hang out in the backyard for hours at a time, letting themselves in through the back gate. They often show up mysteriously without a car. They're just THERE, all the time. It makes me (and Pudge) a little nervous. I mean...I don't know these guys. They don't live there. But every time I go outside, there they are. I like to sit outside and enjoy the nice spring air while Pudge does his business. (I used to also enjoy communing with Dolly occasionally, but she rarely shows up before dark these days.) I don't linger as much as I used to, because...there they are. Mostly during the day, but sometimes in the evenings. Just sitting there. Smoking. Staring. It occurs to me that they know I live alone, and they probably know way more about my daily routine than anyone who doesn't live in my neighborhood needs to know. And maybe (probably) they're completely harmless...just bored (don't they have jobs?), and enjoying the nice tree-shaded backyard of a buddy, and I do appreciate that they're usually pretty quiet, but...I don't like it. I don't like that they're there when I'm not, because they don't live there.
If that makes me cranky and old, so be it. But what do you think? Would that bother any of you?
And stay off my lawn, you damn kids!