A couple Saturdays ago, for 90 minutes, I didn't hate our neighborhood.
A helicopter was hovering just past the woods that border our subdivision. Our best guess was that they were filming whatever was going on over at the Whitewater Center. It was interesting, but hardly cause for alarm.
The neighborhood kids, however, were pretty wound up. Particularly the little boys, who whizzed around on their bikes trying to get a better view of the hovering aircraft. The best view could be had from the sidewalk next to and in front of our house, which led to a cluster of kids hanging around my mailbox. It also meant I got to hear all their theories on what the helicopter was doing there.
"Man, it's the cops. They lookin' for somebody. I'm out."
"I heard a horse from the stables back there got loose. It's running around in the woods and they're trying to catch it. They're gonna shoot it, I think."
"Somebody said a prisoner got loose. He was cleanin' up the highway and he escaped. He murdered a bunch of people. He's gonna get us."
"Maybe it's a tiger or something. Maybe a truck with animals in it crashed on the highway and now they have to find all the animals in the woods."
I found all this amusing and somewhat charming, which is a refreshing change from the stress and irritation I usually feel when I think about where we live. For a few minutes, it was a neighborhood I wouldn't mind staying in for a few more years, instead of one I can't wait to move out of.
The kids gradually lost interested and drifted away. The rotten kid from next door went back to throwing rocks at cars and his friends. Even though we were standing in front of our house, at the end of the driveway, I could hear teenagers screaming "Fuck you motherfucker, that was my fuckin' shot, you fuckin' motherfucker! FUUUUUCCCKKKK!!" as they played basketball on the court in the park behind our house.
Ahhh, I thought. Back to normal.