Now that I am at home during the day, I am running into a different group of tenants who live in our building that I would not have normally seen so often when I was working during the day. Our building consists mainly of widows and middle-aged bachelors; Jason and I being a young, married couple stick out a bit. But we have always enjoyed getting to know our neighbors and try to learn as much about them as possible.
The other day I was doing laundry in our laundry room and there was Gladys, a tiny woman in her 80’s who has a ton of spunk. Gladys goes to Starbuck’s every day in the afternoon- I know this because usually about the time I am fixing to go there myself, she is coming back from her caffeine fix. Gladys is very proper in appearance, but like I said, she has spunk and every now and then she lets out a zinger or two. The day that we were doing laundry together, she gleefully asked me “Do you like Jockey underwear?” I, at first surprised to be asked such a question, and then embarrassed to see her folding her Jockies, simply replied, “Gosh, I can’t say I have ever tried them.”
Gloria is a sweet woman who is originally from Minnesota. I like Gloria. She is a straight talker. We are both alike in that way. Gloria tells is like it is, but with a spoonful of Minnesota congeniality. We run into each other in the laundry room quite a bit and she always is happy to just say “hello” and leave it at that….I sometimes do laundry at 6:30am, so I appreciate that!
Margie is also very sweet, although a little mysterious. I have not been able to hear her life story yet (I pretty much know Gladys and Gloria’s stories), so I am often left to wonder how she got here and what she does with her time. Margie is funny though. Sometimes the scents coming out of other units on her floor displease her, so she sprinkles her own carpet freshener in the hallways! I love that…it’s gutsy, yet passive-aggressive.
Then there is Debbie, the dog-walker for the building. She has her own dog, but she walks other people’s dogs who live in our building during the day. I swear every time I am coming or going, I run into Debbie walking a dog.
There are others, people whose names I do not know, but I know their faces and routines. I like this little community of mine during the day. It’s like we are a gang; a gang that does not do anything together (besides fold laundry), but a gang nonetheless. We’re all in it together: the shopping, the laundry, the cleaning, the lunching, the running around doing errands, etc. The building’s hallways and the streets below are our stomping grounds. We rule the hallways and those streets during the day.
But at night, when the “professionals” come home, we clear out of the hallways and the streets and retreat to our units. This does not bother us, because we know come 8am the next morning, we’ll have it all back to ourselves again! I like being a part of this gang, even if I am the youngest member.