Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Eyes on the street

So my neighbor locked herself out of her house two doors down tonight, and her two-year-old is inside, thankfully occupied watching TV. We were having Chinese takeout when she rang the doorbell. I went over, surveyed the locked windows and doors, and discussed the options: breaking in (a sensitive subject these days in Boston), calling the police, or calling Broadway Locksmith in South Boston. I loaned her my phone and we opted for the latter and they were there in five minutes and the shaggy-haiored locksmith picked the lock in about a minute. This could have happened in a subdivision, I suppose, but our urban neighborhood, with the kids out on their scooters and us on our stoops, naturally made me think of Jane Jacobs, and the way that neighbors are around and close by in the city. "I owe you," the neighbor said. But not really. We're there for each other, just like the 75-year-old man next door shovels the snow in front of our house when in winter. It's our own kind of sidewalk ballet.

4 Comments:

Blogger Jennifer Goldson said...

Yes! I think about this all the time - living in Roslindale. I know all my neighbors, we help each other out all the time, and there are eyes on the street.

I attended and thoroughly enjoyed the CHAPA breakfast yesterday. I wrote about it on my blog: http://jmgoldson.wordpress.com/
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