Hello, friends! I want to tell you about the walk I took with my son yesterday. It was… well, it was something! We hadn’t been able to leave the apartment for fun in a little over a week, because Liam had a pretty bad case of strep throat (which I caught), followed by two days of nonstop diarrhea, followed by four days (including today) of constipation. Sorry for the TMI, but I’m a mom, so… sorry?
Anyway, I decided that we needed to go out and get some exercise and sunshine, since we’re both feeling much better. So, we walked to the park. The walk itself wasn’t all that interesting, but on the way there, we passed by an elderly woman sitting on the sidewalk, with several empty bottles of water around her, as though she had been there for a while. I said ‘hello’ to her, but she didn’t respond, so we kept walking.
We got to the park, and it was empty. As soon as I got him out of the stroller, Liam saw a squirrel, and took off after it, while I collapsed onto a bench to hydrate. After a little while, he ran up to me with an acorn, and asked me what it was. I told him that it was an acorn, and that it was food for the squirrels, and he excitedly ran off to find some more.
After gathering a handful of acorns, I brought him over to a tree, and showed him where he could leave them for the squirrels to find them. Right at this point, a woman and her son were walking over to the playground from the other side of the park, and the boy ran up to me and asked what we were doing. I told him about the acorns and the squirrels, and he and Liam ran around the park together, gathering acorns, and leaving them at the bottoms of the trees.
His mom was super cool. She was a bit older than me, and told me that she was a fitness instructor at one of the local Anytime Fitness gyms. We talked about gyms, podcasts, weird stories in the news, YouTube, motherhood, our kids, and just joked about life in general. She kept telling me how funny I was, and laughing at all my jokes, and telling me I should have a talk show. I think she was just being nice, but it made me feel really good about myself, you know?
Our kids played together, and we chatted with each other, for a good two hours. Then, my son started burying himself in the sand on the volleyball court, and getting absolutely filthy, so I decided we should probably get going. We said our goodbyes to our new friends, and headed to the park bathrooms so I could wash him off. Then, we headed to Dollar General.
Now, the reason we were headed to Dollar General, is because my son has a collection of cheap, dollar store beach pails and shovels… and yesterday, I broke his last shovel. I’ve broken all of them, and was starting to feel bad, so I figured we’d look for another one. When we got there, the place was empty, and I found an employee to ask where there leftover summer toys were. She told me they had nothing left from summer, aside from a few garden hoses and tacky lawn ornaments, and I noted that she was in the process of setting all of the Halloween and fall stuff in the aisle. I was excited to see that, because Halloween and fall decor are my favorite… but, still no shovel for kiddo. I’ll have to try Dollar Tree next time we’re in town.
Now it was dinner time! I usually try to make dinner between 5:00 and 5:30 (Liam’s bedtime is 7:00), and it was already 6:05 when we left DG, so I decided to stop at a nearby pizza place that we had eaten at a few times before. This is where my night started getting… interesting?
The place was empty, as it always was (90% of their business is deliveries, and the inside is kind of dumpy and not great). We sat down, and Liam immediately ran over to the large fishtank by our table, and began losing his mind over the fish, as he always does. A woman came over to our table to get our drink order (I ordered water, but they brought me bottled water, so I had to pay for it, ugh), and when she saw Liam at the tank, she told us about how they had just finished cleaning it all out, because the night before, a group of drunk, ADULT MEN had pried open the top of the tank, and dropped several slices of pizza in there. The owner had to come out and scream at them, and they got kicked out. Luckily, none of the fish were lost, and the tank got a good cleaning.
Then, after staring at me for a solid minute, she asked me if we had met before. I told her I didn’t think so, since we never order pizza from there, and had only been in a handful of times, none of which she was there for. She lingered longer, before asking, “Do you live at [insert my address here]?” I hesitantly told her I did, and she said, “I think I’ve delivered to your house before!” I told her we didn’t normally order pizza from them, and she said, “No, I am pretty sure it was for your neighbor.” I laughed. I laughed so hard.
Let me tell you why.
Since the day he moved in, one of my neighbors has been ordering pizza from all of the various, local pizza places at least 3 times a week. Sometimes, he orders pizza nightly. And the dude is a fucking slob. As I type this, there are at least 3 pizza boxes in our communal hallway by the front door. Just stacked there. He also only takes his trash out every other week, or every three weeks, so I’m sure his apartment is just spotless and pristine…
But, I digress. He orders pizza several times a week, usually when he’s drunk (I’ve witnessed and smelled this firsthand), and he NEVER gives them his apartment number. Ever. So, since he is in one of the upstairs apartments, you have to go through the building’s front door to get to his apartment, as well as the main doors of all the other apartments. The two bottom apartments are larger, and have front and back doors, with porches.
Here, have a super artistic picture:
Of course, none of this is labelled on our building, and there are no numbers or anything on the outside, so people ALWAYS come to our door and knock. Always. Every time. Every fucking time, you guys. Usually late at night, when Liam is asleep, and Kyle is in his underwear, and I don’t have a bra on. This has happened so many times, that I have an actual script that I say:
“Hey, you’re probably looking for apartment 3. Go through the front door over there, and go up the stairs, he’s on the left side.”
The delivery person usually apologize profusely, and sometimes joke with me for a minute, before rushing off. And, sometimes, my neighbor is so drunk when he orders, that he passes out, and DOES NOT ANSWER HIS DOOR.
It happens so often, in fact, that all of the local pizza places have apparently started taking note of this, and talk about him. When the woman found out I was his neighbor, she immediately told me how they all hate the guy, and apparently he is rude, and doesn’t tip well, when he actually does answer the door. I guess it happens more than I thought. I got a good laugh out of that, but it made me feel bad for them for having their time wasted like that all the time.
See? It’s been happening for months. And these are just the tweets I could find of me bitching about it. There are dozens more, I’m sure.
Anyway, I ordered some fries, and a medium pizza (half olives, half cheese), and kiddo and I chowed down for a bit, before my kiddo started trying to destroy everything in the place. So, we gathered up our leftover pizza, and my untouched water bottle, paid for our meal, and headed out.
Just past the pizza place, we found a man who was walking a beautiful sheltie dog, and Liam lost his mind. We stopped and chatted with the man for a while, who introduced us to his sweet boy, Buddy. He told us that he had just lost his female sheltie to cancer, and he was thinking about getting a puppy, but they are so expensive. He also mentioned hat he was considering turning Buddy into a show dog, since he was so well mannered. They were nice. We got some more good pats in with his pupper, and headed off. He was such a sweet, docile dog!
Then, we took a wrong turn into a sketchy part of town, almost got lost, found our way, and ended up taking a very long detour, landing us on the main road of our town. It was loud. But we knew where we were, so that was cool.
On our way home, I saw the old woman again. She was sitting in the exact same spot, in the sun, and had several empty water bottles around her. Remembering my water from the restaurant, which I had not opened, I stopped and handed it to her. She took it gratefully, I asked her if she was alright, or if she needed me to call someone for her or something, but she didn’t understand. She didn’t seem to speak English, but she motioned toward Liam, then to me, and touched her heart. I didn’t know what she was saying, but she seemed thankful. I smiled and waved goodbye to her.
When we got home, I kept thinking about her, and decided I should call the non-emergency police line, just to see if someone could check on her. I called and talked to a nice officer, who took my information, and told me he’d call me if he needed more information.
Then, I popped my filthy child into the tub for a quick bath, since it was already past his bedtime at this point. The officer called me back, and asked me for a more detailed description of the woman. I thought this was weird, since I told him exactly where she was, and a pretty basic description of her the first time… she wasn’t hard to find. I told him that she was an elderly Indian woman, wearing a pink and yellow sari, sitting barefoot on the sidewalk in front of the high school. She had been there for at least four hours, you really can’t miss her. That’s when he told me, “Oh, yeah, her. She’s always out there, we know about her. Thanks for calling.” *click*
Then, I put my toddler to bed, took the trash out, sat at my computer, and debated recording a vlog about my day… but I was sweaty and gross… so, here I am, the next day, giving you an obnoxiously long blog to read through.
Sorry, but thanks for reading, friends!