What's Your Next-Door Neighbor Story?

Is anybody out there?

To help me…

First night in a new town in a new country with people speaking a very foreign language. I was so tired after the long trip, and hard work before coming and the packing and repacking and arranging the house efforts. The first night in a new place it is always difficult for me, because I should learn to hear and understand the sounds and the rhythm of the space. But in this case, for the first time, I was able to rent a big house, only mine, with a huge garden. I’ve seen during the discussions and final negotiations with the owner some houses around, supposedly with humans living there, but for my first 24 hours I was busy with anything else, but promise to make a good will tour in the coming days.

When about to close my eyes and enter the famous stage when you are in-between dreams and reality, but unable to remember exactly the content of your floating ideas, I’ve heard a thunder voice, talking in the foreign language I was not able yet to speak. The words were shouting with the frequency of a machine-gun. I was half-surprised, half-afraid. Who? Where? Why? Apparently, somebody was having a discourse at 1.30 in the morning. Made a tour of the house, nothing. Went back into my room and open the window and the voice was echoing louder in the silence of the street. For another two hours, then stop. Too late to sleep.

The next day, went out curious to find out what was happening. On the left side, at the window, an old man in his 70s, bald and dressed with an impeccably white shirt addressed me all smiles: “Hey, how are you today?” I answered him in English that I am the new neighbour and new in the country and he welcomed me in the same language. And asked me if I am aware of the latest news from the media and the ongoing electoral campaign. Of course I was not. Well, he answered still all smiles, maybe do you want to hear my discourse. And started for the next two hours to repeat, this time in English, the same speech I heard the night before.


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Have a Next-Door Neighbor Story?

As part of our new webcomic, Next-Door Neighbor, we thought it appropriate to have a little contest. Tell us your best true next-door neighbor story, and the winning tale will be matched with an artist and transformed into a webcomic and included as the final installment of Next-Door Neighbor.

About Next-Door Neighbor

No matter how close or how far, we all live next to someone, and we all have a Next-Door Neighbor story. With that in mind, editor Dean Haspiel asked some of his favorite storytellers and cartoonists to create their favorite NDN stories so we could share them with you.

The Fine Print & Contest Rules

By submitting an entry, you are granting SMITH the right to reprint or republish that entry online or in print, as well as make any necessary edits. See SMITH's terms of service for complete details.

This contest ends September 1, 2008. Prizes are not redeemable for cash and must be accepted as awarded. Winners are decided at the discretion of SMITH judges and all decisions are final. SMITH reserves the right to change the contest rules. Enter as often as you want. SMITH reserves the right to reprint or republish all entries.

SMITH Magazine

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