There used to be a lovely slice of Americana, where women would drop by the homes of new people moving in, and bring them all kinds of goodies, gifts, and coupons. It was called the Welcome Wagon. Alas, these in-person visits are no more, though the company still does online marketing, mail, and telemarketing. (Isn’t this a bit like your favorite candy shop turning into a car warranty store and then calling you every day?)
Anyway, lots of folks choose to do it themselves. In our family, the kids know --and think it’s the law, possibly-- that if someone moves in, they get a plate of cookies. I also like to recommend good local merchants, restaurants, and such. It’s neighborly. It’s nice. Right?
So I saw a moving van down the street and decided to pop over with a plate of goodies the next day. As I arrived, a man came walking down the driveway, so I hurried to meet him. I introduced myself and said, “I thought I’d bring you some cookies. Welcome to the neighborhood.”
He took the plate without a word, got into his pickup truck, and drove off. Whaaat? Why didn’t he go inside and ask his wife and kids to come out and meet the new neighbors? Or at least take the cookies into the house, instead of just driving off with them?
WHAT IF HE’S A BURGLAR AND DOESN’T LIVE THERE AT ALL?It’s mighty suspicious. And what person--myself excluded-- could eat an entire plate of 16 cookies all by himself? Surely he would take them inside to share, maybe grab a couple of them for the road, and then leave.
UNLESS HE’S A THIEF ON THE RUN. OR A CRIMINAL MASTERMIND.
It’s mighty creepy. Not sure it’s as creepy as a woman driving by later to check things out, spy, and see if he’s still there. But we’ll find out.
And yes, this incident later appeared in my book, Golden. Sometimes art imitates life.