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Saturday, May 7, 2011

That sick sinking feeling…


It is a tough world. One of my next-door neighbors is losing his house. He does not know that I know and I don’t believe he has yet told his ailing wife.

We have been neighbors for about 11-years now, never close friends, just good neighbors. I remember when he first bought the house; he and his 6-year-old daughter were just beaming. He was newly retired back then, looking for a home in the suburban area of our city to raise his only child. I met his wife shortly thereafter. Now their daughter is gone, their youth is gone, their good health is gone, and apparently, all of their money is gone. Since I often loaned or gave them money during the lean times before the wife’s accident, I had long suspected they lived on the edge of solvency and likely would someday lose the house. The love of home ownership went out of him years ago; the house and yard are in very bad shape; some of the neighborhood snobs will be happy to see them go. Personally, I hate to see anyone lose a home. His wife will be devastated when she hears the news; I can expect her teary-eyed knock on my door any day now. I feel bad for her and bad for her husband. My guess is that the soaring property taxes, sending money to their wayward daughter, and paying the out-of-pocket portion of the wife’s medical bills must have been too dear of a burden for the husband’s pension to bear.

There have been some folks taking photos of the houses on our cul de sac, primarily the afore-mentioned neighbor’s house. Being the type of person who dislikes suspicious behavior, I decided to investigate. After doing some online searching, I found that my neighbor’s house was foreclosed on in January so I surmised that these photo-taking vultures represent real estate firms working for the mortgage company. I kind of resent that my neighbor has been perfectly happy to have me mow and fertilize his lawn all the while knowing that he has a pending eviction, but on the other hand, I know that his plate of hardships is overflowing and that my help at least made his life a little easier. Anyway, since the house is now REO, it is up to the mortgage company and their realty company to provide maintenance from here on out. I will still find it in my heart to help my neighbors move out when the time comes and maybe give them a few bucks to see them down the road.



Carteach0 said...

I get the feeling, several times a day, that the fringes are unraveling faster than we can weave them together.


You're a good neighbor, and more importantly, a good man.

Agree with Carteach. I think the edges have been unraveling for quite some time now, but are coming apart faster now and the financial morass has moved into the middle class.

I've seen some really respectable people standing on street corners in Austin and Houston looking for meals and a job, not a handout for crack or booze. I mean, respectable like MY MOM and YOUR MOM, not what I've seen on street corners the past 40 years.

I'm disappointed our government is letting people slip through the cracks, all for the benefit of the robber baron banks.

Like singer Mojo Nixon said: I hate banks! Great tune if you have not heard it..."Bank teller with the purple hair, is giving me an evil stare..."

Helene Burnett said...

So many people in such pain these days. You've been and continue to be a good neighbor, though. Good folks can be hard to find.

Arthur B. Burnett said...

Greetings from Texas,
I hate to see this sort of thing. You do what you can do. I hope somehow your neighbors land on their feet.

James R. Rummel said...

Take comfort in the fact that you did good, James. Sometimes it isn't enough, is all.

Wilson said...

You’re a good neighbor, unfortunately I believe there will be a need for many more “Good neighbors” before our problems are fixed. You did what you could for them and for that you should be commended.