I live in a four-apartment building that shares a common driveway and carport with another building with six apartments. Our bedroom has a balcony with a sliding glass door that faces the studio apartments across the driveway and, as you can imagine, sound carries pretty well from one end to the other. Over the years, we have had a rotation of interesting occupants across the way.
One girl, who has lived there for a while, I shall call Questionable Taste In Music Girl. I have often caught her, at 1 in the morning, sitting at her computer, smoking pot with the blinds open and singing loudly to Whitney Houston. A few weeks ago it was “P.Y.T.” by Michael Jackson. You can shout and shout across the driveway for her to turn down the music, but she won’t hear you.
To her right, immediately facing our balcony, there is a unit with far more frequent turnover. Since living here, I believe at least 6 different people have occupied that apartment. One rode a Segway around town and listened to bad 60s folk. Another, whom I shall call White Power Bill, owned an English bulldog, listened to charming white-supremacist nu metal, had a red, black and pewter COAT OF ARMS hanging on the wall outside, and decorated the inside of his apartment with a painting of a rough-looking topless woman and a leg lamp like the one from A Christmas Story. But even White Power Bill was not so annoying as the latest woman to move in.
I have no idea what this woman’s name is, but I’m already well acquainted with her dog, Gracie. That’s because, as far as I can tell, all this woman does is sit on her porch, smoking and drinking beer (there are over 40 bottles on the porch) and yelling at her dog, who yips in protest.
“NO GRACIE! GRACIE NO! NO! STOP IT GRACIE! GRACIE? NO.”
“GRACIE? NO! GRACIE STOP THAT. GRACIE NO. NO GRACIE!”
Andrew has taken to doing this incredibly uncanny impression of the woman, which gives me the giggle fits and all, but I really want this woman out of my line of site and earshot. You wouldn’t believe how difficult it is to write or read a 1,000-page novel while this woman and her apparently poorly trained little mutt spend all day on the balcony arguing with each other.
Luckily for me, with the turnover in that place, she’ll be gone soon.
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