Thursday, September 2, 2010

Hope He'd Do The Same

Just when I think I won’t have anything to write about, something happens, as was the case last night.

I mentioned in my recent updates post that Charlie the neighbor has taken to watering his yard. There’s not rhyme or reason to his method and it’s not on a schedule either. The timing is very sporadic and so is the placement of the sprinkler.

When I got home from work yesterday afternoon, I noticed that Charlie was watering his front yard and I kind of chuckled to myself, because as I mentioned previously, he doesn’t edge or weed eat his yard and I think it’s weird that he doesn’t do those things but he does water.

After eating some dinner and cleaning up the kitchen, I left for church and arrived back home around 8:00. When I pulled in, I noticed that Charlie had moved his sprinkler to the shrubs beside where our property lines meet. I didn’t think much of it, except that I was getting some free lawn hydration (thanks, Charlie!). I went inside and watched some TV and before I went to bed I gathered up the recycling items to take outside and sit at the road (Thursday is recycling day) and I noticed that Charlie’s sprinkler was still on in the same location – by now it had been there for at least two hours, possibly longer. Also odd was the fact that Charlie’s garage door was up and the light was on, revealing everything inside to would be robbers.

I decided to go over and ring the doorbell and let Charlie know that the sprinkler was still on and the garage door was up. I figured he had probably just forgotten; after all, my dad left his hose pipe on for three weeks earlier this summer because he had forgotten about it – that’s right, three weeks!

I went over and rang the doorbell a couple of times and got no response. I could see that the TV was on, but couldn’t see Charlie. There’s a window at the top of the door, but I’m not tall enough to peek through and couldn’t tell if he was asleep, dead, injured, or what have you.

I went back home and called my parents. My mother answered the phone and I explained to her what was going on and she said I should call the police. I thought maybe I should wait until the next morning to call, but mother said no to go ahead and do it. She then asked if I wanted to ask my dad what he thought and I said, yes, I wanted to seek a second opinion. My dad agreed. He said he would come over also but that the police would probably get there first.

So, I called 911 – my first time to ever call 911 – I felt like I was doing something illegal because 911 is serious business and I guess I’ve never been in serious business before. I gave the operator my address and Charlie’s address and relayed the situation to her. She asked Charlie’s names, and age and said she would have someone come out and check on him.

My dad arrived a few minutes later – before the police – and asked if I had tried to ring the doorbell or anything again. I said no and so we went over to give it another try. My dad is tall enough to see through the window at the top of Charlie’s door and was able to see Charlie sitting in a chair. My dad rang the doorbell what seemed like 50 times and Charlie didn’t get up, but my dad said, “He’s alive, his toes are moving.” My dad continued ringing the doorbell to no avail. My dad then beat on the door really loud and that woke Charlie up and he came to the door.

When he answered he was groggy from having been asleep. We explained the situation, let him know that the sprinkler was on and the garage door was up and my dad told him, “We’re glad you’re alive!” We told that I had called 911 and that the police were on their way to check on him. Charlie kind of chuckled and said that he had fallen asleep. Then we left and a few minutes later Charlie came out and turned off the sprinkler.

I called 911 again and let them know that Charlie was okay and also alive and there was no need for the police to come. I thanked my dad for coming over and he told me I did the right thing.

So, in the end it turned out to be quite a humorous story, but at the time it was kind of frightening. As I told my mother, people have been known to die in that house – my grandmother’s sister died of a heart attack while living there and wasn’t found until three days later. So, I just wanted to make sure Charlie was okay and I hope he would do the same for me.


Mary McLaughlin said...

I think you did the right thing! I wish you were my neighbor!

Erika said...

Haha! That is hilarious! Glad Charlie is okay - I hope he realizes what a good neighbor you are!

Sara said...

What a sweet neighbor you are! Now he probably looks over his shoulder all the time thinking you are stalking him! hahaha!