"the" Mrs. Astor

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Good Fences Make Good Neighbors

Four homes away, a neighbor had a rude awakening last week when a truck mowed down their nine-foot ficus trees and an iron fence. More than leaving a gaping hole, the truck exposed something the homeowners probably didn't know they possessed: grand kitsch. We knew the pool scene because, after they moved in a short time ago, we didn't hesitate to peek through the bushes to take into the pool area. What amazed us was that with all the money spent on expensive pool furniture, they felt it necessary to cement their idea of elegance with the statue of David (and not just one, mind you). Traffic now slows down to get a glimpse of this mini version of Hadrian's Tivoli palace.
From the glory of Rome Removed, we head back home and get to pass Disney Reinvented. The brightness of the morning sun almost lets the color of our immediate neighbor's home appear cute and tropical; it isn't. It is a deep bubble gum green with brick red trim, straight out of The Magic Kingdom (including a fake waterfall in the back yard. They lead a rather mysterious life behind that formidable gate; when they are home a wide variety of languages waft over the fence. We avoid each other.
The wheels of planning began to spin yesterday in final preparation of Leopoldo's birthday this coming Thursday; invitations arrived, thoughts of what to present began to form, and outfits organized for the very special performance by Hildegarde and--perhaps--a return of Burghie, The Duchess of Pork. It will be a busy week.


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