My family and I live in the Pierremont neighborhood found in the subtle hills west of St. Louis.
When we moved into Pierremont twelve years ago, my wife Wendy and I did what came naturally to us as hospitable former missionary types—we went around to meet our new neighbors. This was mostly a pleasant and casual process until I met my next-door neighbor Michael for the first time.
I saw Michael working on his immaculate yard as I pulled into my driveway a week or so after we moved in. I waved and walked over to introduce myself. We shook hands and exchanged names and pleasantries—but as we did so, Michael got a sort of puzzled expression on his face. I found out why when he looked in my eyes and said, “You know, Don, you’re the first person on this block to ever shake my hand.”
“What?” I replied, “How long have you lived here?”