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  • Writer's picturemaggiehsmith07

The Case of the VERY Dead Christmas Tree

It finally stopped raining and we’re left with a cool, waterlogged day. The ground is like an over saturated sponge.


I’d schlepped an inflatable stand up paddle board down - ready to debut it on the river but the wet and cool doesn’t make me want to risk tumbling my out of balance self into the murk so I’ll tuck the board into the shed.


A foul mood has enveloped me and I feel unable to free myself from its grasp. I think it’s good I have a short work week ahead of me and then off to Kripalu. There’s the whole work thing - Andrea reminds me that I’m not particularly a big fan of work change. She asked me what in particular is bothering me about work, “Besides the patriarchy.” I’m unable to articulate an answer.


Approximately two weeks ago, a neighbor showed at our door, concerned about our next door neighbor. She showed a 2nd time, and left a note, and last Sunday, we relented and called the police for a wellness check on the neighbor. File this decision under “N” for no good deed goes unpunished. I thought this would be a quick and simple task. Andrea called and this resulted in the police, then ambulance, calling her repeatedly. After she hung up with the ambulance I said, “Wait - I don’t think they were supposed to tell you that.”


“HIPAA schmippa!” Andrea said with a dismissive wave.


The fire department showed again on Wednesday for reasons unknown.


The neighbor who initially sounded the alarm is like a terrible Nancy Drew whose idea of investigating is to email us and then, when increasingly alarmed, loop in another neighbor, one whom she indentified in all caps as THE BELLEVUE REALTOR.


I’m beginning to think our neighborhood is filled with eccentrics.  Our other neighbor had the case of the missing dog treat bin and table and concluded a painter we hired stole both. Look. I don’t know. Maybe he did. I didn’t run a background check on him - I hired him solely based on his ability to paint the spare room of a spare room ceiling following a repair to a leak - painting that needed to be done urgently because our insurance company was threatening to cancel our policy if the painting were not completed. Another time, this same neighbor spent hours of time sleuthing who had sent a box to her home (not us, we assured her) and yet another time still, asked us about a missing package in a way that suggested she thought it was us who stole her stuff (we did not).


This morning, the aged sleuth emailed us and THE BELLEVUE REALTOR again. I deleted it without replying - something I wouldn’t ordinarily do but please refer to the above where I admit being overcome by a fit of grouchiness. I want to reply, “When you make contact, ask him to take his dead assed, fire hazard of a Christmas tree down.”


I know many sad reasons someone may have a live Christmas tree in their living room up for over a year. This is why baby Jesus gifted us with therapy, which is seldom a bad idea.


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