Monday 22 June 2015

Pineridge Pete

I like to putter around the house and sometimes I putter around in the yard and frequently I will putter in the garage. If you don’t know what I mean by “putter” then join the club because I would be hard pressed to explain what I do when I putter. Things get done. Not the things that really need attention, but interesting things.

Sometimes when I am in the garage I will work with both the man door and the garage door open so that the garage will cool down and the dust that I create will hopefully blow out one of the doors and eventually become a part of our environment. Mostly though, the dust just seems to hang around the garage and will eventually settle on one or both of the cars. It settles on anything else that isn’t moving as well, and disturbingly, it seems to settle on me as well. I like to think that the dust settles because I am at “ground zero” when it comes to manufacturing dust. The truth might be that I am moving almost as little as the vehicles. So what?

When I am cleaning this gizmo, sharpening that blade, sanding a whatzis I am not limited to working at the workbench. I will wander around the garage wondering just where I had put that pot pick-r-upper that I haven’t seen in sixteen years. If the big door is open I will wander out into the alley just to see if any of the neighbours happen to be out side of their garage looking up and down the alley. Generally, the alley is pretty quiet. The odd time I will see a wild rabbit sitting in the middle of the alley wondering what he will do next. What he generally does next is to stiffen up, look in the direction of some unheard sound and then scamper off into the nearest backyard.

Every now and then I will hear a car coming down the alley and I wander to the door to wave at my neighbours. I more often than not don’t know them from Adam, but it is the neighbourly thing to do. I wave at them and smile and they wave back at me with a smile. The husband is asking the wife if she knew that guy and she just shakes her head “No, but it’s the neighbourly thing to do”.  Sometimes a truck or a car will slowly pass by and the guy inside just looks at me without smiling and I make sure to get his license plate number. He looked like he was casing the garage for a late night break in. I have so many plate numbers scattered around the garage that even if I were broken into I wouldn’t remember which numbers were recent and which ones were twenty years old. I need to get a system!

When the weather turns cooler or wetter, I will keep the garage door shut and the weather outside. This of course hinders my friendly waves and keeping a lookout for possible house burglars. It also makes it tough to monitor the comings and going of my immediate neighbours. Lucky for me there is a 3/8 inch hole about two feet up from the ground in the middle of the garage door. When I hear something suspicious in the alley, I just wander over to the hole and by moving my eye back and forth I can get a 150° view of whatever happens to be going on just outside the door.

This has suited me fine for years, but I am getting older and crouching down to spy on the neighbours isn’t as easy as it once was. Yesterday I decided to do something about it. I drilled another hole at eye level so that I no longer have to crouch down. Pretty smart of me eh? Sure I could have done it twenty years ago, but I didn’t want to seem nosy. In order to conceal the hole I made a little wooden plate, painted it the colour of the door and fixed it so that I could swing it out of the way when I need to peak outside. Louise says that now I need a secret password for those that want to come in.

No, it isn’t creepy at all! It would be creepy if it were in a public place where people actually go, but almost no one is ever in the back alley except for the odd appearance of “Pineridge Pete” the rabbit.

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