I've lived in this house for 21 years and today, for the very first time ever, I had a conversation with my next-door neighbor. We've never been introduced but he knows me and I know him because, after all, we've been neighbors for 21 years. Why this break in our mutually distant relationship? I had to apologize and offer reparation for his mailbox, which lay mutilated and very clearly dead not 50 feet from where we enjoyed our first meeting.
Daughter number three, newly licensed and eager to "get out of here," was going to venture to a shopping center this afternoon. Running little errands near the house wasn't enough -- she was ready for the big game. With my new, hideously expensive car insurance in place, I kissed her goodbye and hoped everyone would stay out of her way. From my vantage point in my bedroom I saw her get in the car and head toward a near by driveway so she could turn around. I waited. And waited. And waited. I thought perhaps I had missed her when all of a sudden she appeared in my room, gasping and crying, incoherent. She managed to tell me she'd hit one of our neighbors bushes; when I looked out the window and saw an impression of the inside passenger door handle on the exterior of the car, I wondered what the hell sort of bush she hit. After she moved the car into the driveway it was revealed that the bush was in fact a mailbox.
She loaded me into the transport chair and over we went to Mr. Campbell's. He was very kind and said reparation was not necessary, perhaps John could help him put up the new mailbox. We chatted for another few minutes and then left, stopping to view the corpse and pick up the passenger side mirror which had been amputated from the car.
It does not take a rocket scientist to figure out what happened -- this was a clear-cut case of inexpert backing up. My suggestion (actually insistence) that she practice her technique in the "wrecked" car was disregarded. I chuckled when she said the car needed to be repaired ASAP so she could go out Friday night "like a normal teenager." We will be lucky to get the car back in a week's time -- I'm fairly certain the passenger door will have to be replaced. Yes, it's that bad.
To say truth, I'm glad that, if something was going to happen, it was something like this where no one got hurt but a poor innocent mailbox. It will certainly be a learning experience for my headstrong and overconfident little miss. And trust me when I say she will not be going out until she has perfected the art of backing up.
13 hours ago