|Drip, drip, drip.|
I have blogged (belabored) several times on the economics of my current neighborhood, and this over-blogging of the subject, perhaps, was because I grew up poor. The kind of poor where there is food on the table but not enough to fill a growing teen's stomach..especially when there were five children at that table. The kind of poor that when you outgrew last year's winter ice skates, there was not enough money for a new pair. The kind of poor where you did not get the gifts you hoped for Christmas, so you did not make any wishes. My parents were loving but somewhat distant as life pulled them here and there while trying to make enough money to feed, clothe, and shelter a family of seven. We were never the "homeless" poor although my father was on unemployment for one year. I was in sixth grade the first time I ate in a restaurant, and that was with a friend and her parents. Our form of eating out was the 15 cent hamburgers at MacDonald's when I was a teenager. I never knew how difficult it was for them to make ends meet, as they were good to shelter us from the tensions of money problems and we did not live in a community where there were wealthy that flaunted their fortune. We never felt we were poor...just a farm family. I am sure this is what makes me side with the liberals, as I know the hard-working poor.
Education was important and we all worked hard to make good grades. Besides, that was the only way we made money...by getting "A's." We did not get an allowance. I did have the fortune to go onto a small state school where I got a Bachelors's Degree. Then after saving carefully at my first job I was able to go on to get a Master's Degree. I met an educated man at graduate school and he was also a good and honest man and we married and raised our family on a solid middle-class income with a small nest egg from living 9 years overseas. To me that is rich.
So living in my current middle-class house, which we designed and had built, is a dream. As I have written before, the neighborhood is mostly upper-middle-class with at least three millionaires in the larger houses and everyone else solid middle class.
I have written about the lovely large house to our left and our good neighbors with whom we went out to dinner at least twice a year and talked on the phone as needs arose. They finally downsized and now have a small apartment in the Capital city and a small Condo in Florida. Their huge house sold in two days! The new owner(s) moved in over the weeks of December. Three moving vans illustrated that the new owner(s) had plenty of furniture to fill up the place. This was followed the week before Christmas by a large tree to decorate. I do not spy on them, but as I did dishes there is a clear view between the bare winter trees and I easily saw the day-long activity.
I called my old neighbor and she said that the new owner was a single elderly woman. "Single elderly?" I said to my former neighbor, "She must be very wealthy to live in a huge house like that by herself." The response was "Oh, she has lots of money!" This from neighbors who themselves have "lots of money."
I will try to get to the end of this ramble here about money, neighborhoods, and neighbors. This week my husband harvested the last of the carrots from the food pantry garden...pounds of carrots and nowhere to deliver with a closed food pantry due to Covid and holidays. The pantry was not to open until the second week of January. So after calling around he found a good place for distribution but saved two batches for our neighbors on each side. Therefore we(he) got to meet the "elderly lady" with a hospitality basket of carrots and a welcome card. She was very gracious and surprised that we were the first to drop by. I think she thinks our neighborhood is neighborly...
She told my husband she had sold her 600-acre farm to the north and hosted a garden show on PBS for years...so she likes to garden and she must be VERY good to be on PBS. As hubby and she chatted, they realized they were the exact same age spared by a few months. Her husband passed a few years ago. So when hubby came back with a name, this nosy old bitch (me) had to Google her and I found that she is listed as a Philanthropist, rather than a TV host. She has donated a million dollars to our county hospital and hundreds of thousands to other venues in this county. We are so lucky to have people like her. She is beautiful (maybe a face lift) but a lovely smile and warm face.
This morning my husband noticed that "Martha" was out in her front yard planting a tree! She was digging a hole with a shovel and then she brought in bigger tools.
I told you she was Martha...she drives that bobcat! You can just see her on her knees doing something with the vehicle.