When my mom and dad first bought this house , it was a strictly white upper middle class neighborhood. Over the years it has become greatly more diversified, but still a great place to live. Our neighbor on the South side is an African American divorced woman with three young boys. They would regularly come over and borrow tools, to fix things around the house or work on their car. What I put an end to was my dad climbing ladders or crawling under cars to help them out. Observing and lending tools is all you should expect from an 80 year old man. Since he no longer helps them physically , the neighbor boys refer to me as the mean white guy who moved in with his dad.
Half way down the block lives a man with depression and mental problems. One day coming home from the store, we found our street blocked off. The cop approached the car and told us that we would have to wait because the guy had a gun and was acting strange. My dad told the cop that it was getting close to dinner time (3 PM ) and that it would be best if his son’s dinner wasn’t too late. The cop eventually let us drive in and promise not to leave the house until the situation was resolved. About 2 weeks later we had a similar situation, this time ( 5 PM ) my dad told the same poor cop that he always watches the news at 5 and it would be a real shame to miss it this one time because of the neighbor – the cop let us drive in again.
The neighbors across the street are from Latin America. As he does with everybody, my dad greeted them and welcomed them to the neighborhood. Even though he couldn’t understand most of what they said, they became good friends. A few years later when their daughter got married, my dad was seated at the head table as an honored guest. He said he didn’t understand most of the ceremony, but he was pleased to go and had a great time. the daughter sends him a Christmas card every year since.