I've lived here ten days and have only seen my next door neighbor three times. Twice she walked past our window talking on a cell phone (she has to pass our apartment to get to her car). Once we exchanged a hurried "hi" when I stepped out of my door as she stepped inside hers. Judging by the absence or presence of her vehicle, she's not the early-to-bed/early-to-rise type (I am).
This near-invisibility in such close quarters makes me nervous. What if she's over there silently cursing me because my baby cries at night? Does she resent my hanging laundry in front of her apartment every day? I bet the previous occupant of our apartment never was up at 6:00 a.m. hacking dirt clods in the garden or tuned in to Click and Clack too loudly on Saturday mornings.
The other day I clutched my courage, along with a little loaf of zucchini bread, and went over to introduce myself. I thought maybe a little peace offering was in order, just in case I and mine had already unwittingly offended.
She didn't answer the door. I knocked twice that afternoon when she was obviously home, with no response. If that's not enough to make a neighbor paranoid, I don't know what is.
The bright spot is that the landlords have invited us to a cookout this weekend along with the next door tenant. That means she'll have to meet me face to face and realize I'm not an ogre, and that my daughter is such a darling that her noise is forgivable.
I just came in from garden planting (that's a separate story) and another rare neighbor sighting. She stepped out, smiled, "Good morning," and kept going. Squatting under the wash line looking at seed packets, I squeaked out a "Hi," and kept going, too.