Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,
To read TWO NINE-YEAR-OLD BOYS, click HERE.
To read WHAT DO NINE-YEAR-OLD BOYS DO WHEN THEY'RE HOME ALONE? click HERE.
To read WHAT I DO WHEN NINE-YEAR-OLD BOYS ARE HOME ALONE, click HERE.
When last we visited, I looked like this as I told the two nine-year-old boys who live behind me what they are not allowed to do:
The boys looked like this:
They went inside. I didn't see them for the rest of the day. I didn't see anyone that night. The house was dark. It looked like this every night for weeks:
The white lines are the blinds that I could barely make out.
The boys were quiet. The carousel of smoking and cell phone-talking adults had disappeared.
I told Willy Dunne Wooters about the miracle. He said, They must be keeping it on the down-low because they have reason to fear the kids will be taken away from them.
If my yelling at the boys and calling the police caused them to stay inside and––I hope––caused the adults to keep an eye on them, then I did the right thing. It was the only time I've ever called the police about a neighbor, not that I know who these "neighbors" are.
Something kind of odd did happen one night after many nights of peace and quiet. I went out in the dark with Franklin and Penelope so they could have their before-bed potty, and I spotted a man standing in the backyard of the house where the boys live. I had enough light on my deck to see that he was staring at me. Did he know that I was the one who called the police? Was he angry? I didn't care.
I put my hands on my hips the way my mother used to do when she was angry and I stared right back at him. In fact, I stared him down. Before long, he went inside the house.
Occasionally, I see the boys and an adult or two use the backdoor as they make their way around the house to the front, but the climbing and yelling have ended, along with the conclusion of the carousel.
Now I look like this:
Boys, don't bother Mama Bear while she rests. She will make you sorry.
Infinities of love,