This was the 51st one!
In attendance were five of the "original" neighbors. Four made it into this photo, one could not traverse the grass with her walker very well.
I am of the opinion that neighbors SHOULD get to know one another. At least, we should know who shares the world around us. Since my in-laws are two of that "been-here-forever-group", I am not really new to my neighborhood. I have "crashed" this picnic for most of the last 23 years! In fact, this is only my second time to attend as an "official" resident of the road. I have known most of these people since they moved on to the street...even though I've lived across town, and before that in a different city.
How does one go about alerting, inviting and communicating with 35 households on a street? A note in the mailbox...if you're me.
In my former neighborhood, I had the best mailman in the whole world. His name was Artie D'Antonio. Back in January of 2008 I wrote about Artie on my blog. To read that click here: The Lady and the Mailman. My thoughts on him are still the same. I miss him. He was a rare and special bird.
My current mail person is NOT cut from the same cloth as Artie! Such a shame if you ask me. She is not very friendly. She's a strict rule follower and I don't think she likes her job.
A month before the picnic I did put a flyer in each of my neighbors mailboxes. It did have my name, phone number and e-mail address on it. I did request my neighbors to RSVP. I rented tables and chairs and a head count was most helpful for that.
A few days before the picnic, my MIL took it upon herself to re-print my flyer and put it again in everyone's mailbox. That was the straw that broke the camel's back for my rule following mail carrier. She made it a point to stop the next day and scold me. I do know that you cannot put things into mailboxes, but this was a harmless neighborhood get together. I had no plans to profit from this. I was just trying to be neighborly. THEN, our mail carrier scolded my MIL, AND my household received a phone call from the post office saying IF I DID THIS AGAIN I WOULD BE PROSECUTED. Seriously? Seriously.
Boy, was I hurt and angry. I was certainly spoiled from my 8 years with Artie. I have needed to put some time between that event and this posting. Am I wrong in hoping for mail carrier turnover? I have been plotting to have postcards made with the above picture on them and mailing them to all my neighbors. Would my carrier get my point? Had she been Artie, she would have received her own invitation to our picnic.
When we moved into this house, the former owners left a plastic mail box in a closet in the basement. It's out of sight so it's out of mind. Trust me, after my this incident with my mail carrier, that box is going to stay tucked out of sight in my house. I don't want to be prosecuted over a box left here by previous owners!
The moral of this story: Do NOT put notes in mailboxes.
At the picnic, everyone heard the story and hopefully I won't see any of my neighbors in the Police Beat section of our paper due to illegal mailbox stuffing.