I was working feverishly, as I always do, nose to the grindstone, paying little attention to anything else. Out of the corner of my eye, a notification popped up on my cell phone, an instant message. Ready for a break, as I always am, I grabbed my phone to check the message.
Steve! I got some news for you.
It was a message from the president of the condo association. What in the world did she want? Since it was news, it was pretty safe to assume that I wasn’t in trouble (again). While it was true that my notoriously nasty nemesis neighbor had been stepping up her complaint game as of late, I knew the board wouldn’t take her serious again, so that could not be the reason the board president was contacting me. I decided to take a wild guess with my reply.
My downstairs neighbor sold her condo?
No way!!! No joke?
Nope! On the phone with property management now. There is a contract. They did the inspection today.
I was speechless. No words. Overcome with utter thankfulness and joy, I jumped up and danced like a wild man.
BAM BAM BAM WAIL WAIL WAILSCREECH
Oops (not). Terrible Teresa was home.
The questions started swirling. Was it really true? How soon until the closing? What was the price? Would I be able to restrain myself from causing trouble?
A quick internet search revealed that the sale was a contingency, price around $3000 less than what she was asking, about $25,000 more than what I paid for my place (both good and bad — tax wise it could affect the assessed value of my own home, but it meant the equity in my home is very good right now). There was no closing date available. I frowned a little. The sale could go south. The closing could be months away.
That was June 18. Today is July 7 and I have had a new neighbor for over a week. He’s a single guy, in his sixties, gregarious and laid back. I couldn’t have picked a better neighbor on my own.
I knew something was up. Teresa really had been upping her complaint game, making a wimpy fuss when I had friends over, slamming doors and yelling. Whenever she left her condo, she played mariachi music full blast on a Bluetooth speaker — which prompted me to flip the main breaker to her condo a few times a day. She banged on her ceiling every time I moved.
I guess that’s why I didn’t feel guilty when I started taunting her to work harder and faster on the packing (please), every time I walked past her front window or door. It’s possible I learned a few Polish curse words. I definitely heard them. She screeched them at me as she slammed doors and windows. When I walked past her door, I let out a loud WOOHOOOOOO THE WICKED WITCH IS DEAD. Each time I saw her outside, I asked her when the closing was, asked her if the date could be expedited. Imagine my satisfaction when her response was to point to her backside. When she propped hallway doors open while she was moving things from her condo to her garage, I instantly removed the brick or rock. Her garage is next to mine, so if I went to my garage and she was in her garage, I made sure I encouraged her to pack faster.
Which is probably what prompted her actions for our last encounter.
I came home from the grocery store, pulled my car in my garage. Teresa and her husband were outside packing boxes into the back of his pickup truck, the truck backed halfway inside. As I shut the hallway door to my garage and was locking it, she screamed at me and slammed her garage hallway door. Life was very good. I dropped off my groceries inside, the walked across the driveway in front of her garage.
Thanks for giving me another reason to be glad your are leaving.
She freaked. She started screaming at me in Polish. I stood in the driveway, arms crossed, a huge grin on my face.
LEAVE LEAVE LEAVE LEAVE she wailed at me, threatening me as she took her shoe off and shook it in my direction.
You’re an insane b####. I have three years of your torture to get out of my system. I am enjoying this… when are you finally going to be gone?
Teresa stomped in my direction, started screaming in my face, spitting in my face, pulled her fist back as if she was going to hit me. That was when her husband came around from the back of the truck. He gently put his hand on my shoulder and led me away.
Steve, you’re a better man than this. Leave her alone. Be satisfied in knowing that Teresa is going to be an emotional mess for the rest of the evening.
And that was it.
I’m not too proud of myself. OK, I shouldn’t be too proud of myself. I am a Christian, after all. It was not a WWJD few days for me. My behavior showed me I have an awful long way to go on my journey towards spiritual maturity… light years long ways.
For now, I am celebrating, literally walking on sunshine, the stress of living in my home no longer a reality. The wicked witch is dead.