Love Thy Neighbour: Three Great Ways to Give Something Back

Image courtesy of imb4381 via Flickr

Recently, my husband and I have been searching for a new home closer to the city. This move would bring us closer to work, drastically cutting our commute, and closer to my family who provide us with loads of support. But, so far, the real estate stars have not been aligning in our favour. So, for now, we’re trying to focus on the positive aspects of where we dwell. The top of our list: our neighbours.

Bad neighbours can make your life a living hell. Everyone’s heard horror stories, from bickering over property lines to full-out battles over barking dogs. But good neighbours, the ones who go above and beyond, can pretty much restore your faith in humanity.

One of our neighbours, a former mechanic, will pop our hood in the dead of winter to help us figure out what that little check engine light means; another leaves bags filled with the most adorable hand-me-downs for our daughter; and another has invited us up to his family cottage for a fabulous weekend getaway. We’ve shared cups of coffee and gardening tips, collected mail and offered up child care. They’re a lovely bunch, our neighbours, and as we stop to reflect on this, part of us worries that we’d be messing up a very good thing by moving away.

Either way, now that the warmer weather is finally here, the street is alive with friendly banter and helping hands. It’s likely high time to give a little something back. This summer, why not show a little love to your fellow dwellers: bake and deliver a batch of cookies; get the whole block involved with an awesome street party; or, if you have some elderly neighbours, gather your gear and head over to give them a hand in the garden.

Do you have great neighbours? Tell us about them!

—Christina, CF’s managing editor

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