Close Encounters of the Neighbor Kind

People think that living in the suburbs can be boring, but I disagree.  Honestly, if you keep your eyes open, you never know what unusual experiences will come your way.

Like the fall evening a few years back, when I was grilling turkey burgers for dinner.  Standing on my patio, I remember enjoying the crisp California night air, the abundance of stars and the still quiet of my backyard.  All was right in my little world.

Then, out of the corner of my eye, something moved.  I looked up.

There was my middle-aged neighbor, Jerry, illuminated in the hot, white light of his second-story bedroom window – stark naked.

My mouth fell open.  Transfixed and rooted to the pavement, I stood with the grill tongs in one hand and the salt shaker in the other.  Part of me wanted to look away, but my inner voice said: Wait, Nancy. Not so fast. This could make for a very good blog post.

My inner voice was right.  I kept looking.

On tiptoes, I squinted up.  What was Jerry doing?

It appeared he was packing a suitcase.  Yes, that made sense. Earlier in the day, I’d chatted with Jerry when I was getting my mail.  He’d mentioned he was taking his whole family to Mexico for a long vacation.  They really needed to relax, he explained.

Now, looking up at his exposed form, I’d say Jerry looked plenty relaxed to me.  Yet, at the same time, he seemed almost animated. With vigor and purpose, Jerry bounced back-and-forth taking clothes from the closet to the dresser to his suitcase on the bed.

Closet. Dresser. Bed.

Closet. Dresser. Bed.

Closet. Dresser. Bed.

Oh, my!

Blood was pounding in my ears.  Jerry’s hefty, hairy body seemed to writhe as though he were moving to music only he could hear.  It looked as though he was doing his own private, naked-packing dance.

Then suddenly, as if on cue, Jerry abruptly  turned and strode straight toward the window where he looked out into the dark night.  I gasped at the full unobstructed view of him in all his pale, jiggling glory.

All I could think was: I certainly hoped he would be taking sunscreen with a high SPF to Mexico, because with all that pale skin he was really going to need it.

As my turkey burgers cooked, the packing continued.  Jerry had retreated to his closet returning with a big stack of what looked like beige polo shirts.  Oh, this wasn’t good.  I wanted to call up to him, "Jerry, dude, don't take so many neutral shirts. You're going to Mexico for god‘s sake!" Because as we all know, taking the wrong clothes can really affect the success of a trip.

By this time, it looked like Jerry’s suitcase was almost full and my turkey burgers were starting to burn.  Did I have enough material for a blog post?  I did.

It took all my willpower, but I knew what I had to do.  Silently, I stole one last, very long look at Jerry.

Then reluctantly, I turned off the grill, went inside and we ate dinner.




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