PG’s back has reached a certain age. His back feels a great deal older than the rest of him feels most of the time.

His back hasn’t always felt that way. In college, all of PG’s body parts felt young and immortal.

One fine spring day during that time, a friend lent PG his motorcycle. PG will not paint himself as an expert motorcyclist, but he had ridden enough different motorized two-wheel vehicles to be a decent and safe rider.

On this perfectly lovely day, PG was enjoying his ride on the borrowed motorcycle, tootling along on the main street that went through campus with his then-abundant hair blowing fashionably in the wind.

PG noted that an automobile on a cross-street had stopped at a stop sign as it should have so PG and the motorcycle could whiz through.

After stopping, the automobile drove forward, right in front of PG and his borrowed motorcycle.

PG has neglected to mention that he was attired in his era’s standard spring motorcycle protective gear — t-shirt, cut-off shorts, sandals and a full head of hair.

Time slowed for PG as he hit the brakes of the motorcycle, but it was clear a collision would occur in the very near future.

PG noted that the front wheel of the motorcycle had hit the rear door and was stopping quite suddenly. However, PG kept moving. Somehow, instead of hitting the back door of the car with his lovely head of hair, he twisted and put a big dent in the door with his right shoulder.

Immediately thereafter, things became quite confusing as PG bounced off the back door and rolled across the street, ending up near the curb.

PG will spare you the small details of the rest of his afternoon, but he was taken to the hospital, told by a doctor that he was stupid for not wearing a helmet but very lucky, unlike someone who had experienced a similar motorcycle accident without a helmet, had arrived at the ER a few minutes before PG did and was presently in a coma.

For a few months after the accident, PG thought he had gotten off scot-free, but a persistent back ache took him back to the orthopedist a couple of times. His back would occasionally be sore, but it wasn’t something that cramped PG’s style.

A few months after that, PG met the first attorney he had ever known, one his parents had selected, and signed a bunch of papers. A couple of years later, PG received a nice sum of money from an insurance company, noting that the attorney had kept one-third of the total amount the insurance company had paid.

PG flunked his draft physical shortly after graduating from college and avoided death or dismemberment in Vietnam.

Moving through middle age, PG experienced twinges in his back from time to time. The older he became, the more frequently those twinges happened.

Today, many, many years after that beautiful spring day when he got up-close and personal with an automobile door, if PG moves jusssst so, his back won’t usually bother him. Considered movements almost always work quite well. Ill-considered movements create at least a warning tinge and on occasion will put PG into a reclining chair with a heating pad for an hour or two followed by another period of gingerly movements calculated not to awaken his sleeping spinal nerves.

This winter has brought a great deal of snow to Casa PG and the surrounding areas. Those who ski and snowshoe are in heaven. Those who sell goods and services to skiers, snowshoers and companions of such people are having their best year in quite a long time so PG doesn’t feel right about complaining about clearing his driveway of snow on a regular basis.

A new family moved into the neighborhood about six months ago. It’s a friendly community and the family was welcomed by the PG’s and several other neighbors.

The father of the new family evidently intuited that PG should not do much, if any snow-shoveling. So, after each one of the several overnight snowstorms we have experienced this winter, PG wakes up to either a clean driveway or the sound of this kind neighbor shoveling the snow off the driveway and sidewalk of Casa PG.

PG thanks this neighbor effusively whenever he can catch the man doing good works and has in mind an additional way of showing gratitude for the many kind services his neighbor has bequeathed on the PG’s over the last several months.

Looking back on what has flowed from his auto-typing fingers, PG realizes that he has rambled more than a bit. The lack of a sore back evidently manifests itself in unusual ways. However, he is very grateful for wonderful neighbors, including the one who has done so much snow-shoveling this year.

2 thoughts on “Neighbors”

  1. Blessings on such neighbors.

    We had one with a snowblower – he often would clear a LOT of the sidewalk to both sides of his house. We were duly grateful. That was in New Jersey.

    Davis, California, does not appear to get snow. EVEN with the LA basin under tons of the white stuff. The future may be different.

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