Posted October 15, 2010 by jimhigley
My new neighbor, Randy, is really nosey. Good thing.
Last week, I woke up to a extremely busy day. I also woke up to a house that was so cold, ice crystals were starting to form in the water that had been puddling in my kitchen sink.
I figured it was time to stop fighting the fact that summer was officially over. I needed to crank up the furnace. So, before I ran out the door to a bunch of appointments, I flipped the thermostat into “HEAT” mode, waited a few minutes for the furnace to kick in. I could feel the warm breeze of air coming through the registers and started to imagine what it would be like to come back to a warm, tropical house.
And, off I went.
About an hour later, sitting in my doctor’s office, I heard a “bing” from my IPhone alerting me I had a new email. So I opened it up. It was from my next door neighbor, Randy. And the subject said, “Furnace?”
I don’t know about you, but I found that just a tad bit freaky. How did he know? What else does he know? Were my blinds closed last night?
Randy’s email, to paraphrase, went something like this:
“Jim, by chance did you turn on your furnace? The neighborhood is now overpowered by the smell of natural gas. I remember this happening last year, with the former owners, and the fire department ended up coming out to avert an explosion. If my recollection is correct, you have a couple of burners that don’t work and you are currently dumping toxic levels of gas into your home and our neighborhood. Please call. Have a nice day. Randy.”
Okay, it wasn’t written exactly like that. But that’s what I understood him to be saying. So I screwed the balance of my doctor’s appointment and made a dash home to what I was sure would be a street full of fire trucks, EMT, ambulances, helicopters overhead and the evening news. This was not going to be a good day.
The only thing I came home to was the other neighbor mowing their yard. I did contemplate diving on top of him telling him to take cover because I feared the combination of his mower and my gas leak might blow the entire neighborhood up. But I restrained myself.
I walked into the house. I have absolutely zero sense of smell. So I had no idea what was circling around me. But I trusted Randy. Both dogs were still alive. No alarms were sounding. So, I disarmed the thermostat – kind of like a hand grenade scene – and shut down the monster in the basement breathing gas into my world. And in an instant it died. The dragon had been slayed.
Who says nosey neighbors are a bad thing?