Yesterday evening at around 6 I heard a meek little knock at the door followed by the ringing of the doorbell. I went downstairs and I see the little girl (8 yo) from across the street. Uh, LG is not coming out to play, so I open the door and prepare to tell her this.
“Hi, Ms. Nerd Girl. My dad wants to talk to you.” Oh really….
So the dad comes across the street. “Hey Mrs. Nerd Girl, how are you?” “Good. You?” “Oh, I’m good. Look, uh, the living situation at the house has changed.” “Okaaaay….” “Well, uh, my girlfriend, her daughter (8 yo), and our daughter (baby) don’t live there anymore.” “I’m sorry to hear that.” “Well, uh, yeah. So I was wondering if uh, D, could um, ride the bus with LG in the mornings.” “Yes, that’s fine.” “Well, see, uh, I have to leave for work at 6:30, so really I’m asking if she can come over at 6:30 and wait until the bus comes at 6:50?”
Hold up. I think I’ve mentioned this before, but when we moved in 9 years ago we were the only black people on the block. Still are – except for the occasional renter. Okay, whatever. Well at the time this dude’s parents lived in the house across the street. When the dad saw who was moving in apparently he – who had never spoken to any of the neighbors before – ran around talking about “the blacks are coming, the blacks are coming.” Thank you Paul Revere…anyhoo, all our other neighbors are cool. Reserved, but friendly. Those folks never spoke. Until they noticed I was pregnant and then the wife would wave or speak, but dude would not.
Fast forward 6.5 years. The mother and father move out and give their son, his girlfriend, his daughter, and her daughter the house. The kids spoke. The girlfriend spoke. Dude? Did not. They went on and had a daughter together. And Sunday? She took her two and broke camp.
Which brings us to yesterday afternoon when he sent his kid over to ring the doorbell so he could ask me if I’d watch his kid for 20 minutes every morning so she can get on the bus safely.
Of course, I said yes. It’s not her fault it took her daddy 108 months to decide to speak. And then only when he needed something.
What would you have done?