Tuesday, July 08, 2008

I've Got Nothing


But a headache.

Temps topped 100 degrees here today. I heard tell 107 in some parts of the valley but here in Phoenix we are seldom one of the hotter spots. I didn't bother going out on the front porch to see the thermometer. What point is there in attaching a number to your misery?

There was one blessing today. The park pool was closed. Tuesdays is the day each week they keep it closed for maintenance, including application of chemicals. I say blessing because we don't use the pool but it is right over the backyard fence and the noise from those who do use it is not buffered one iota sense they cut down the juniper trees that had been a kind of hedge creating shade, privacy and a bit of a noise absorbency. I've been spending a lot of time in the mornings and evenings sitting in the backyard reading or writing. Or trying to. I have one or more books and a clipboard with me, a large iced drink of some kind and Merlin on his leash.

The morning tends to be mothers with small children and preteens. The afternoons teens with gutter mouths. The evening more teens and adults. There is a small wading pool for the babies inside the fence with the swimming pool. The other morning I listened for an hour to the full voiced commands of a thirty-something Mom whose age I know because she told one of the kids there that when he was thirty he could _____. I Missed the definitive word but she was on him about disrespect. Her style of supervising about fifteen kids was to yell commands and then ask, Did you hear me? Did you hear me? I said yadayadayadyadayada. Did you HEAR me?

Well one of her little ones somewhere between three and six, one of her own because she kept saying, Mama told you yadayada, this kid said he needed to use the bathroom almost as soon as the group entered the pool area. I sympathize with the woman's dilemna because this put her between a bad place and a rotten place. Pool rules require at least one adult supervising children under a certain age. She could not leave the pool area to escort the little one back home unless she made all the kids leave and locked the gate. She would have had to take all the really small ones with her. So in the same loud, and I mean LOUD, voice she told her son to go in his pants. To just sit down and go because he was going to get wet anyway. Go ahead, she said, Mama said you could. But the kid was real reluctant and started crying and she just kept repeating the command to sit down and go in variations for about fifteen minutes. I gave up on the back yard and moved to the front porch.

But now you know why I could say in a post several months ago that I haven't been swimming since sometime in the early nineties in spite of all the times I mention that pool just over the fence.

Oh the stories I could tell about life in this trailer park. Wisteria Lane has got nothing on Bear Creek Estates. Umm I kinda made up that name there. Don't want to get the park owners or management on my in-laws case.

But I'm serious. The stories I've heard about things that go on here or went on in the years before we moved here! Just about everything that has been included in the Desperate House Wives story lines has happened here in some form or other. Drugs--using, selling, growing. Murder. Family feuds. Domestic Violence. Child neglect. Infidelity and other kinds of partner mix and match. Fires. Robbery. A tree falling on a house. Burst pipes. Creek flooding the nearest row of trailers. Cat fights--both kinds. Dog fights. Raccoon fights. Neighborhood gossips. We have at least four ethnic groups. And young men dressed in black with shaved heads and tattoos carrying hunting knives on their hips. The only real difference besides the architectural style of the houses is the costumes and the diction. The human dramas are all cut from the same cloth. I'm thinking I could write a novel set in a trailer park.

Whether I should though.... Entirely different question.

0 tell me a story:

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