Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Won’t you be my neighbor?

We quickly outgrew our house in AU Park when the twins were born.  That small third bedroom went in one fell swoop from the “tomorrow “ room to a room stuffed full with two cribs, a rocking chair, a changing table and no room for much else.  We started looking for a bigger house, our search expanding in concentric circles, like sonar radar, as we realized our budget was not going to get us the space we wanted or needed.

We briefly considered moving to Virginia but that Maryland aversion to crossing a bridge had already set in.   We told our patient realtor, no matter what we are not going outside the beltway, as if that were the magical line between a reasonable and nightmarish commute.  (Turns out the line is MUCH closer in).  Tulip Hill, Bannockburn, Bradley Hills, Kenmore,  too expensive, too small, too old, too boring, too much work.

Finally, we found ourselves one weekend crossing that dreaded Beltway, passing over a stalled river of cars,  taking a left and then a right and then turning into a neighborhood we had never seen or heard of before.  Carderock Springs.   Gone were the red-brick colonials with white
picket fences.  In their place, 1960s styled modern houses, with more windows than walls, surrounded by towering trees, natural landscaping and not a power line in sight. 

One step into the open house and we knew we were home.  (The other family who bid on the house had to be persuaded but ultimately saw it our way).   The raised ceilings, open floor plans, with the
light pouring in from all the windows.   A gate in the backyard fence that opened to the elementary school  field!  Brick colonials were forever ruined for us.   A few months later, we moved in.

We thought we were buying our dream house, but what we didn’t realize at the time was that we were buying our dream neighborhood.   Where neighbors are your neighbors in that 1950s/60s old-fashioned sense of the word – lending cups of sugar, looking out for your kids, stopping by to help when they hear you are sick, chatting at the school bus stop when you should be hightailing it to
work, hanging out at the neighborhood pool until it is so dark you can’t see your toes, let alone where your kids are. 


At a time in our lives when supposedly it is harder to make and keep new friends, we have made close friendships with so many Carderock families, ever expanding that circle of people that we consider an essential part of our “village.”  Over here in Carderock Springs, we are rockin the suburbs.  Wanna be our neighbor?

1 comment:

  1. As an honorary resident and witness to the goings-on in CS, it's fair to say that the genuine friendships you have made with your neighbors stands as a model of what I hope to find someday. In the meantime, I'll just ride your coattails!!