Monday, July 11, 2011

The Flagpole Saga

When we lived in an apartment and could do basically nothing to alter our living space, there was really not much to comment on other than the kinds of toys we put out on our balcony. Or maybe that - gasp - we put a broom out there, too (which was against the rules at our last apartment).

What's funny to me about having a house and having neighbors in pretty close proximity is that our changes are visible and make quite a ripple. So in the recent digging up of the flagpole, we figured neighbors might talk. And they are.

We're not anti-flag, although they're not really our style. But this flagpole was about 25 feet tall and right smack in the middle of our front yard. Here's a picture from Google of the yard with the pole.

Goodness knows how many young Shenk heads would end up colliding with that thing in the years to come. The pole was erected by an elderly man who lived in the house for 20 years and came right to Richmond from Italy. He was proud to be in America and so wanted everyone to know that. Sorry, Signor, it's gone.

When I worked at Starbucks after college, my manager informed us of the saying that went around: "Don't move the cups." Basically, when you come in (especially as someone in management) to a new store and you just start changing things and moving around the cups, the filters, the pastries, whatever, it really throws people off. You have to respect what they have been doing and what they're used to, and any changes should be made after simply being there for a while and very gradually. In that vein, I think we moved the cups. But it makes for good conversation. The "street with the post office" on it is not a way to identify us anymore. No one's mad, but they sure noticed. :)

What about you? Any modifications to the front of your house that got the neighbors talking? Or modifications your neighbors made that made you do a double-take?

1 comment:

Colleen said...

You always have to make the house your own home if that includes ripping out things or adding new. Our house was really plain with NO curb appeal what-so-ever! We added retaining wall flower beds with lots of bushes and colorful flowers and recently added shutters to finally give it that finished look it was missing. Our neighbors have came over to tell us how happy they are that this house is now what it should have been and what a great job we are doing! Makes us proud :)