I'll go ahead and say it first: Hello.
Well, to be technical, that isn't my "first" effort, or even my second, or eleventh, or thirty-seventh.
Do you know that I pass you four or five mornings a week (at the end of a leash being pulled by a lovably overweight beagle), and that more often than not, I say "hello" or "good morning" or, when I can't bring myself to face your rejection, a tight-lipped "hi"?
You have lived in the house on the corner for the better part two years.
But you have never once replied.
You could be a statue, really, hollowed out on the inside, with a spraying garden hose in one hand.
I'm not looking for any kind of relationship, or any favors. I'm not going to start up a long conversation about crabgrass or the mistletoe growing in our trees or the weather. I can live with neither of us knowing each other's names. (Baxter, though, would like you to know his.)
No, we don't know each other, except by sight. You are not the neighbor I'll come to when I've run out of eggs, and I'm (clearly) not your choice for a front porch-sitting, lemonade-sipping companion. But I do know that at 6:30 a.m., we are two of a very few people in the neighborhood who are dressed and ready to face the day.
It just seems to me like the very least little thing we can give each other is this: Hello.
Paula Treick DeBoard