Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The Neighbor Next Door

Alan and I live in the corner unit upstairs in the 10-unit apartment building we call home. From our perch, we can see who stands out on their balcony and gauge pretty effectively how many neighbors are home at any given time, depending on the number of cars parked in the claustrophobic "parking lot" in the back of the building.

Two doors down from us live a man and a woman who leave their windows open wide when they cook. On weekends they have bacon. Downstairs there is a family who eats Asian cuisine and who have a red tassel with a Chinese character on it hanging from the ceiling. Then there are the empty units which stand quiet and still, waiting for new people, new couples, new families and confident individuals to come inside and tack pictures and memos up on the refrigerators. For the most part, aside from the sounds of utensils on plates and pleasant chatter over the day's events, everyone is quiet.

Our next door neighbor is one of the extremely quiet ones. We have actually never seen our next door neighbor but somehow figured out that the neighbor is a woman. Alan thinks that she is an entertainer of men, but the more obvious answer is that she is clearly a ghost. Strange noises will come from the other side of the wall, noises that normal people don't make. More than once now, I have woken up to the sound of someone/something in that apartment shredding paper through what sounds like an industrial-grade paper shredder. And who gets up at 7 to think The paper. I must shred it, now? Clearly, something not of this world, something... supernatural.

10 comments:

Roy said...

i can't believe you waited until night time to write this entry. there's no way you didn't just freak yourself out right before u were going to bed. hahaha.

Tonia said...

At least only paper: our neighbour likes to put wood through a chipper at 7am. Downside of the countryside.

2busy said...

Oh, I'm so glad I don't share a common wall. So creepy!

Shelby said...

We live out in the country and when our lawn mower was in the shop, we paid one of Justin's friends to come do it for a month until we got ours fixed. It took him awhile to come out and do it, so the grass got a little long, a neighbor [not the one we paid] showed up at our house to cut our grass at 7 in the morning & then when Justin asked him to leave, he went home and called the cops. I was shocked. I mostly stood there, with my mouth hanging very close to my knees. :) Needless to say; he doesn't wave back, when we wave to him. :)

Sobrina Tung said...

Wow, that is a really crazy story Shelby! Guess long(er) grass really bothers him! But does it really need to be cut at 7???

Little T said...

Ooooooh, I love a good mystery!

Razzberry Corner said...

Maybe your neighbor has a coffee grinder for her coffee beans??? Maybe it's an old one that makes alot of noise & is slow? Maybe she drinks alot of coffee?

Erin P said...

Good mystery! I do like Razzberry's idea though. Is it her bedroom or kitchen which adjoins your wall? Or....could she be making a fruit-yogurt smoothie with ice for breakfast every morning?

gladys said...

or maybe she eats shredded paper for breakfast. i once knew someone who ate paper. he likes newspaper best. anyhow, he was weird - eating paper or not.

MunkyBt said...

I have a few theories:

1)"gladys" is right, and Girlie has a fetish for gnawing reams of paper first thing in the morning, like a beaver going at a redwood on Thanksgiving.

OR

2)Alan is right that "she is an entertainer of men", and what you hear first thing in the morning is the sound of her using her favorite paper shredder - didn't know she had an entire collection, did ya? - to make the confetti with which she lines her fuschia pleather bra every evening. This early morning noise problem might be easily resolved if you slip a note under her door, informing "Bambi" where she can purchase pre-shredded confetti in bulk, and a better place where she might stick it.

OR

3)Your neighbor is a librarian. She spends the entirety of her days and evenings making no more noise than the sound she makes when raising her index finger to her lips and uttering a quiet "shhh" to inconsiderate teenagers. Because of this dull existence, she has a) developed an addiction to caffeine, which requires her to drink up to 2 gallons of strong coffee every day; and b) owns the noisiest coffee grinder known to man - most likely produced by Ron Popeil, or quite possibly Starbucks - with which she grinds an entire day's worth of coffee beans every single morning, before heading to work. I would equate the amount of satisfaction she takes in this noisy daily ritual to the satisfaction that I get when I stupidly OD on chocolate and Julia Roberts movies at the end of a bad week.

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