Do you know who your neighbors are? When I moved into my first house, I knew the old couple across the street because the woman gardened and her husband always looked a little cantankerous. And I knew the single mother next door to us because, as our accounts manager David would say, she was an “unfortunate looking woman.” But I never interacted with anyone on our street because their doors were always closed and none of them hung out on the front porch in groups like we did.
Regardless, as more people flock to the internet for Facebook farming and Skype sessions, maybe we should all make a little more effort to get to know each other. I’m not saying you have to entertain thirty minute conversations with your neighbor about why his daughter is student of the week at the local middle school. I’m just saying that maybe it’s time to say hi, or join the local tennis team like our CEO Linda Bryan did. The warm weather is a perfect excuse to have neighborhood cookouts and softball games and pool parties. Heck, you could even chat over the successes (and/ or failures) of your lawns and gardens for three minutes, and that would count!
You may end up finding out that your neighbors are caring, funny, or maybe even a little weird (you might like weird). You may realize they enjoy the same TV shows you do, share your hobbies, or are even capable of babysitting your hyperactive eight year old on a Friday night so you can go somewhere for grownups.
Kyla Fullenwider actually did a great and simple list of ten things you could do to build some community in your, well… community. And if some of her ideas do not seem apartment complex friendly (like, say, hide and seek), then just start knocking on doors anyway (may be less awkward if you bring baked goods with you). Click here for the full list.
(For more from Scorpions and Centaurs’ flickr stream, click here.)